Does 5SOS' Album Really Sound Good AND Feel Good?

We go track by track for a test of the senses.

All this week, we've been gearing up for 5 Seconds Of Summer to drop their second album, Sounds Good Feels Good. We've looked at everything from the band's newest anthemic lyrics, the SGFG-inspired ink worn by their devoted fans, the reasons why they started writing about deeper stuff, and, of course, the fifty shades of Michael Clifford's hair.

But what we haven't done is ask one very important question: Do all 14 songs both sound good and feel good? Or do some sound good but feel just OK, and vice versa? Which songs sound better than they feel? This what we're here to find out.

A quick note before we start: We're listening to the standard edition here, which consists of 14 songs. So, let's get to it!


The Breakdown: 5SOS shared this album-opening track back in September, but it's nice to hear it front and center on SGFG. There's no better way to kick off a sophomore album than with a surging group chant of "TAKE MY MONEY" over a pounding drum rhythm and the crunchiest guitars that slap your ears awake. That momentum lasts for the song's entire three-minute run, making it a hell of a rush.

Sounds Good/Feels Good: Both.

"She’s Kinda Hot"

The Breakdown: Our very, very first taste of what SGFG would sound like, "She's Kinda Hot" dropped back in July, so it's easy to give into the temptation that it's somehow less exciting than all the brand-new stuff on the album. But that's not even remotely true. This is the anthem of the New Broken Scene! It's literally all the feels.

Sounds Good/Feels Good: Feels really good.

"Hey Everybody!"

The Breakdown: Somehow even catchier than the song that comes before it, "Hey Everybody!" doesn't back down, but it's also not quite the kind of massive, loud song 5SOS does well elsewhere on the album (though its chorus is extremely blast-worthy). This is all about the layering and sequences of f--king ridiculously hooky melodies that don't leave your head for hours.

Sounds Good/Feels Good: Sounds good.

"Permanent Vacation"

The Breakdown: An escapist daydream? Maybe. A bold declaration that 5SOS is "the voice of the new generation"? Absolutely. That's what makes this Dookie-era Green Day throwback pop-punk song a perfect blend of both sound and feels.

Sounds Good/Feels Good: Both.

"Jet Black Heart"

The Breakdown: Michael's favorite song on the album and definitely one of the most relatable, "Jet Black Heart" is case in point for how 5SOS has evolved to the point of writing "real sh-t" these days. "I've got a jet black heart / And there's a hurricane underneath it / Trying to keep us apart" -- damn, dude.

Sounds Good/Feels Good: Feels good. Feels real.

"Catch Fire"

The Breakdown: Cool piano riff intro. Catchy drum breaks. On-point vocal melodies. If "Catch Fire" isn't a single soon -- or even, like, a non-official single that still gets a lot of airplay because of how good it is -- I'll be actually hurt.

Sounds Good/Feels Good: Sounds goooood.

"Waste The Night"

The Breakdown: "The first day we flew into LA we wrote this song. It's called 'Waste The Night' I can't wait to play it live," Calum said on Instagram. And the splashy drum beat? "Inspired by the Killers," according to Ashton. And the fact that I really wanna hear it live, too?

Sounds Good/Feels Good: Sounds good. Feels really good.


The Breakdown: Co-written with superstar songwriter Simon Wilcox -- who also helped penned Nick Jonas' "Jealous" -- "Vapor" is as airy as its name implies, especially as the lyrics soften to match the longing in the vocals. "I want to breathe you in like a vapor" would make a hell of a wrist tattoo, wouldn't it?

Sounds Good/Feels Good: Feels good.


The Breakdown: With artwork that's "super powerful," as Luke wrote on Instagram, it only makes sense that the song itself would bring the feels in the same way. The cool ghostly, far away-sounding vocal chant that acts as the song's main hook gets repeated over and over again with different textures, which seems to span all the different emotions the lyrics -- "I'm lonely like a castaway" -- suggest. A legit feast for the ears.

Sounds Good/Feels Good: Sounds good.

"Fly Away"

The Breakdown: "We, uh, wrote this song around a ping pong table," says Calum. "You guys liked this one. It's very fast," says Michael. It also features one of the strongest group na-na-na-na chants on the album, which adds to its fist-pounding, head-nodding appeal.

Sounds Good/Feels Good: Sounds good.


The Breakdown: With a chord progression like this -- recalling Blink-182's "Adam's Song" for me anyway -- it's hard not to get lost in an avalanche of emotions, especially given the lyrics: "Who am I? Who am I? And I don't know myself?" All the sounds that gradually pile on are awesome, too.

Sounds Good/Feels Good: All the feels right here.


The Breakdown: I honestly think this one sounds completely different than anything else on SGFG, and it's a really good thing. The don't-give-up message of the lyrics makes it worthwhile, but the real treat here is the whimsical movement of the instruments (especially the strings!). "this song is super special to me and I think you guys will really like this song. +his wings are cool as sh-t," Michael said. Yep.

Sounds Good/Feels Good: Sounds good.

"San Francisco"

The Breakdown: A bright, clean acoustic track, "San Francisco" is actually a really refreshing love song given the rest of the album's louder, crackling moments. The city is, as Ashton wrote on Instagram, "where love was made," and that he loves the lyrics. "I feel it big time and hopefully you do as well."

Sounds Good/Feels Good: Sounds dazzling and wonderful. Feels warm and gooey.

"Outer Space/Carry On"

The Breakdown: Well, it's six minutes long with two separate, distinct parts. It evokes floating up into the ether of night and also ends the album with a group singalong of positivity. So, yeah. Pretty much everything we could have ever asked for, right?