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Track Review

Good Charlotte hasn't released a new album in nearly four years. But if you happened upon "She's Kinda Hot" on the radio or online and didn't know any better, you might think the band's self-imposed hiatus was over. Turns out this attitude-drenched rock anthem from Australia's 5 Seconds of Summer was co-written by Good Charlotte's Joel and Benji Madden.

Heavy Hitters

The song's initial acoustic stylings soon give way to a pop-punk tsunami that brings to mind not only Good Charlotte, but all sorts of other bands from that scene, such as Green Day, My Chemical Romance, Blink-182, Sum 41 and Simple Plan. (The latter two also co-wrote material for the sophomore 5 Seconds of Summer album from which this track comes.)

It's definitely a heavier sound than anything on the group's eponymous 2014 debut. But that vibe seems to be connecting with fans, if the song's surge straight to the top of iTunes' singles chart immediately after its release is any indication.

"I'm surprised that people love that song because it's heavy as h---," guitarist Michael Clifford said in a recent interview with Rolling Stone. "I'm so happy that people are supportive of that type of music again, which is always the type of music that we've wanted to make."

Jekyll and Hyde Get Hot and Cold

The song's title implies that it's going to focus on a young woman who is, in the band's adolescent objectifying estimation, "kinda hot." And that's exactly what we get in the first three verses, after which the song takes a Jekyll-and-Hyde turn in a more empowering, less objectifying direction.

Things begin crankily with a profane description of what sounds like a guy's live-in girlfriend: "My girlfriend's b--chin' 'cause I always sleep in/She's always screamin' when she's callin' her friend." Not a very flattering bio, to be sure. But this sleepy dude is willing to overlook these character flaws because, well, "She's kinda hot, though."

He continues: "My shrink is telling me I got crazy dreams/She's also saying that I got low self-esteem." And you know where all this talk about his counselor is going, right? Yeah. "She's kinda hot, though." The next verse adds, "She put me on meds, she won't get out of my head/She's kinda hot, though."

But just when you think there's nothing more to this lame-brain song than lusting after "kinda hot" females, 5 Seconds of Summer turns an unexpected corner.

Are We Alright or Not, Though?

When we hear about a guy who "left college 'cause it felt like a job/His mom and dad both think he's a slob," that "kinda hot, though" refrain morphs into "You've got a shot, though." And the lyrical proceedings soon become a full-on underdog affirmation party as the band raises a flag for anyone who's ever felt alienated or misunderstood: "They say we're losers, and we're alright with that/We are the leaders of the not coming backs/But we're alright, though/ … We are the kings and queens of the new broken scene/Yeah, we're alright, though."

What we get on "She's Kinda Hot" is kinda confounding, though: half a song that leers at "hot" girls and half a song that empowers kids who don't feel so hot about life but are determined to press on anyway.

It's a combination that leaves me feeling … lukewarm. Though.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements

Conclusion

Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Christian Beliefs

Other Belief Systems

Authority Roles

Profanity/Violence

Kissing/Sex/Homosexuality

Discussion Topics

Additional Comments/Notes

Episode Reviews

Credits

Rating

Readability Age Range

Author

Cast

Director

Distributor

Network

Performance

Hit No. 1 on iTunes.

Record Label

Capitol

Platform

Publisher

Released

July 17, 2015

On Video

Year Published

Awards

Reviewer

Adam R. Holz

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

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