Oh…The Wanted. I’ve been following them since before they came out due to the buzz being created by their manager (who also created/managed The Saturdays). Their whole concept of being a “cool boyband” is an interesting one and obviously works. As I’ve gotten more into K-Pop and seen the evolution of choreography and amazing singing abilities of modern boybands in Asia, The Wanted (and One Direction) seem a lot more stale to me. However, their music is catchy and fits the Western music market. Their launch in America has been an interesting one. “Glad You Came” kind of came out of nowhere and they were able to generate a following quite quickly through club gigs and building their name slowly. Their US EP, a mixture of their two UK albums, was released today in America and here are my thoughts!

Glad You Came
Awesome. I loved this song when it first came out in the UK last summer and still love it now. It has a great melody and is amazing to dance to at parties. The lyrics are pretty typical of a club track (I have to admit the line “you look well on me” still makes me double-take every time I hear it still) and the boys have a charming accent when they sing that makes the song stand out from the huge drone of pop tracks out now.

Chasing The Sun 
One of the newer tracks on the EP, and the next single. Penned by Example, the song is in the same vein as “Glad You Came” and is a good party track. I don’t think the melody is as good as “Glad You Came” but I really like the backing track and the production. This was definitely a smart choice for the second single and I’m sure it will be another big hit for them on both sides of the Atlantic. I was a little disappointed by their performance on The Voice, but the song is strong and is on par with their previous singles.

All Time Low
I heard this song almost 2 years ago now and my feelings haven’t really changed. It is catchy (and extremely fun to sing at karaoke…especially when trying to imitate their accents) but I’m going to be honest when I say that I really don’t understand why it was such a big hit. It has a good chorus but the melody in general is a bit stale. The build-up with the strings and the beat in the music is different and interesting though.

The other newer track. I had high expectations when I heard it was produced by Ryan Tedder. After listening to it a couple times, I actually like this song more than “Chasing The Sun” and I think it could be a cool single. It continues the dance-pop direction they have been going in, but has a different mood from “Glad You Came” and has a catchy melody. I like the intense middle 8 before the final chorus (and epic backing music).

I actually quite like “Lightning” despite the boys actually saying it was kind of filler material. Though it’s not as strong as some of their other singles, I think it has a great chorus and the production on the track has a lot of depth. Another fun one to sing along to and different from the past few tracks on the EP so far.

Heart Vacancy
A single off the first album in the UK. I have to admit, I really didn’t like “Heart Vacancy” before and I still don’t really. It’s all a bit cheesy and I don’t think it’s the right key for the boys’ voices. It all sounds a bit strained and not that nice to listen to. The Wanted definitely have their dance tracks down but I definitely think they could do better midtempos and ballads.

Gold Forever
My least favorite off the EP for sure. Another one that I didn’t really like when it had first come out. The chorus is a bit of a letdown and another one that doesn’t really stand out as anything special or interesting. I appreciate the backing track but I definitely think they have some better album tracks that they could have included instead of this song.

Lose My Mind
I love this song. Possibly my favorite song of theirs ever. I can’t believe it’s only a bonus track on the special edition of this EP because this song deserves as much attention as possible. It has a great melody and a fantastic chorus. The boys all sound really good on this song and the melody is easy to get caught in your head.

The only real ballad on the album. It has a cool feel to it (very moody and dark) which is different from the rest of the album, but I hope that they get better ballads as they progress. I think they can do better than this song. I like the verses more than the chorus.

The only non-single on the EP…and it was a good choice! I do think they have some stronger ones on the first album, but this song isn’t bad. I think this is better than the other mid-tempos (“Warzone,” “Gold Forever,” and “Heart Vacancy”) and it has lyrics that are a bit unique and it’s a solid end to the EP.

The EP runs as a little Greatest Hits package for those that have followed the band since the start, and overall, it is a solid EP. The songs are all catchy and stand out from each other. I’m glad they have been doing well for themselves and hope this has opened the door for other British acts (ahem…The Saturdays) to enter the US market. The personas they’ve decided to portray are interesting to me (kinda douche-y to be honest…but I guess people here like that) and I’m not really totally behind them yet. However, I look forward to what they have planned in the future.