Ten years ago, Good Charlotte burst onto the pop-punk scene with their first, self-titled album. Since then, the band has cranked out three albums and slowly evolved into more of a dance-rock group. Their latest album, Cardiology, released Nov. 2, has gone back to straight-up rock. And it’s not half bad.

“Like It’s Her Birthday” became the first single, released Aug. 24. This guitar-heavy tune tells the comical story of a girlfriend letting go for the first time on the dance floor. I must admit that it’s catchy.

Soon after “Like It’s Her Birthday” reached 100,000 views on YouTube, as promised, another song, “Counting the Days,” surfaced. A few jokes were woven into this post-breakup jam, and the accompanying riffs and vocals make it relatable and catchy, all at the same time.

The sixth track treads back into pop territory, but the fantastic storyline and shout-a-long chorus make up for it. “Last Night” is pretty self-explanatory; singer Joel Madden has “the best night of life,” even if he can’t remember what exactly happened, or if it even happened at all. It was stuck in my head all day.

For some reason, I especially enjoyed “Harlow’s Song (Can’t Dream Without You).” It’s so different from all the other songs on the album that I’m drawn to it. It’s the ballad (sappy love song) of the album, and I tend to fall for those. For those of you who can’t stand the sap and mush of it all, pressing the next button is always an option, but I encourage you to give it a chance. You might be pleasantly surprised.

Unfortunately, there are a few bits of the album that are too much like the previous album for my taste. The synth of “Let the Music Play” and the strange distortions of “Silver Screen Romance” strayed away from the hard-hitting rock of this album, back to the dance, pop-y feel Good Morning Revival had. I didn’t care for them much, but it wasn’t enough to ruin the rest of the album.

Any concerns that I had about where the band was heading have been extinguished with Cardiology. They are back on track, and I’m sure they have restored the faith of the rest of their punk-rock fans.

Ashlee Crane