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Tokio Hotel + The Matrix… What’ll It Be?

March 23, 2009

With Album 3 heading into the finishing stage, according to a late winter article and several thrilling tweets from Cherrytree Records, we’re left to wait and wonder just how awesome Tokio Hotel’s upcoming album will be. And it will be awesome. There seem to be concerns, however, over whether fans will even recognize them. Should we be bracing ourselves for a whole new Tokio Hotel?

Well, we know that they have worked, pretty extensively it sounds like, with The Matrix, the award-winning production team of  Lauren Christy, Scott Spock & Graham Edwards. The Matrix have recently released an album featuring Katy Perry and have worked with Hilary Duff, Ashley Tisdale, and Britney Spears. I just cherrypicked those collaborations to make you sweat, but should we be worried?

I can say honestly that I’m not worried. The Matrix seems to bring out artists more than inject themselves into them. I was surprised to learn, for example, that Avril Lavigne’s “Complicated” and “Sk8er Boi” were co-written by The Matrix. They sound like they were written by a teenage girl. That’s not an insult. Avril was a teen, and regardless of how involved they might have been with those songs, she came through. So, that’s a good sign.

According to an MTV article from late January, Tokio Hotel was drawn to The Matrix for their work with Avril on “I’m With You,” which they also co-wrote. It’s a really good song, and if you listen to the production, you can see how this could work:

The band also liked their work on Korn’s See You On The Other Side, but had no intention of replicating that sound. Still, those anticipating new rock songs on Album 3 should feel secure that The Matrix can do rock, and that they will keep it true to their own sound. (Their work with Son of Dork is good too, though definitely not a direction I want to see Tokio Hotel take.)

What gives me the most confidence, I think, is that The Matrix co-wrote and produced Jason Mraz’s “The Remedy (I Won’t Worry).” It’s a fantastic song, not at all generic, and you feel the artist. Not to mention it’s catchy as hell, accessible, and radio friendly.

So, will it be a brand new Tokio Hotel? In some ways, it will be. It has to be – they’re more mature, more experienced, and, like it or not, working with big American producers. I think this will be an evolution, though, not an Extreme Makeover. We’ve got a lot to look forward to, no doubt.

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