x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 January 2018

Album Review: Baptized by Daughtry

In this mushy outing, the rock band of the American Idol alumnus Chris Daughtry explores folk and electronic dance music.

Baptized by Daughtry.
Baptized by Daughtry.

Daughtry Baptized (RCA Records) ⋆⋆

By and large, the artists spawned by the big-network talent shows have conformed to an easily defined type: well-groomed, clean-cut sorts, malleable enough to slot into a boy/girl group or belt out a cover to bag an easy Christmas No 1. The grip of heartland rock music on the American psyche is a strong one, though, and while Chris Daughtry only ranked fourth in American Idol’s fifth season finale, he struck a chord with the public. Grizzled of voice, with notes of Nickelback’s Chad Kroeger or Creed’s Scott Stapp, Daughtry found success at the head of a proper rock group – albeit one that goes by his surname. Still, rock isn’t selling right now, so Daughtry’s fourth branches out with notes of folk (The World We Knew, Cinderella) and even EDM (Waiting for Superman, a rather sickly sweet tale of a damsel in distress apparently set to the sound of a mobile- phone advert). By and large, it’s a limp and rather cloying collection, although we can at least savour the irony of a talent-show survivor defending the ailing art form with a banjo stomp called Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll.