There's something rather adorable about Angels & Airwaves. Since former Blink-182 guitarist/vocalist Tim DeLonge debuted A&A, his constant proclamations of his new band's superlative greatness — "the best music made in decades" — have all but set him up for failure. But he simply does not care. He's so convinced that "overcooked" equals "quality work" that he continues along, making laughably unoriginal albums concocted of the bits that even the Cure and U2 deemed too melodramatic and bombastic. Hell, the guy's even going to make a movie... scratch that. He's already made a movie (Start the Machine, a documentary about the band), and he's going to make another one (I-Empire, a science-fiction flick based on the "concept" the band is exploring on their same-named new album). This is a man who's sure of himself, blissfully unaware of his glaring inability to create interesting music, and seemingly unconcerned that people just aren't all that interested in his band's new album. ( I-Empire has sold only about 150,000 copies since its November release; the band's May 2006 debut has sold about ten times that.) While some people may say that self-aggrandizing cluelessness is creepy or obnoxious, haven't we been told that if we don't believe in ourselves, nobody else will? Well, not that many people believe in Angels & Airwaves, but that's not swaying DeLonge's faith that the band is rescuing music from all that is mediocre. And that's just adorable.

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Jason Ferguson