It’s not like Tegan and Sara did something wrong, or composed an album of terrible songs, but the twin sisters’ latest effort isn’t quite that good either. Quite frankly, it’s just bland. “Heartthrob” features 10 (12, if you purchase the iTunes deluxe edition) tracks that blend together very easily. A few tracks stand out here and there, but the duo has moved onto a more electronically driven record that makes for a rather underwhelming experience.

The album starts out strongly with the lead single “Closer.” Over an infectious dance beat, the twins sing, “It’s not just all physical / I’m the type that will get oh so critical / So, let’s make things physical / I won’t treat you like you’re oh so typical.” From there, things get jumbled. “Goodbye, Goodbye” and “Drove Me Wild” are just a couple pieces from a trove of songs that sound vastly similar; they are full of clichés revolving around love and analogous synthesizers. In the former they warble, “Does your heart ache / When you get around me? / Does your heart break / When you think about me?” as though they were 16-year-old girls rather than 33-year-old women. The same goes for the latter in the lyrics: “When I picture you I think of your smile / And it drives me wild.”

In contrast, the songs that stand out positively on the album include “How Come You Don’t want Me?” and “Now I’m All Messed up.” The first follows a mid-tempo beat for most of its duration with quick synths and stop-and-start vocals, whereas “Now I’m All Messed Up” is a slower ballad-esque song, which touches on the more complicated elements of love. Tegan and Sara harmonize, “Now I’m all messed up / Sick inside wondering who / Whose life you’re making worthwhile;” they also touch on internal conflict in the lyrics: “Go, go if you want to,” which is shadowed by “Please stay,” chanted in the background.

The album overall is a major shift for Tegan and Sara; the sisters have dabbled with electronic sounds in the past, but quirky folk-rock was their main element. This record should play well as a whole on the dance floor, but most of the poignant and introspective lyrics present in past albums are nowhere to be seen. “Heartthrob” has its moments, and it’s not a failure…it’s just a disappointment.

Rating: 3 stars