58+ mosquito bites from the associated camping trip didn't surprise me, though: there seem to be a lot of them this year. It has been a wet year.
The other surprise was that there are few very good pop songs on Miley Cyrus's new album "Breakout". "The Driveway" is interesting in its occasional use of teenage half-speak to get a point across, and for its sonic variety. "Goodbye" is a very good ballad, done in a country crossover style but better than most in that category. If she really did have a significant hand in writing these songs, as claimed, it is impressive.
Miley Cyrus isn't a great singer. There's a lot of evident tonal correction in the vocal tracks, and she sustains talks with a few vocal flourishes more than she sings. Far better than all rap music out there, though.
There are a few other tracks of note: she covers Cyndi Lauper's "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" which is a bit strange because Cyndi Lauper wasn't safe, whereas Ms. Cyrus is very safe. "Fly on the Wall" is also quite fun and interesting sonically and sounds a bit like it could be a Halloween song and we need more of those.
They could have tried a bit harder with the instrumentation, since I bet this was a big budget album. While I liked the song, "Goodbye" uses what sounds like an arpeggiated synthesizer guitar for accompaniment; "Fly on the Wall" doesn't even use real hand claps as far as I can tell because they also sound synthesized.
This isn't Morrissey or Tori, but, at the very least, the two songs mentioned above are good pop music.