The Dear & Departed- Every Waking Moment
Record label- Equal Vision
Release date- November 8, 2011
Coming from Equal Vision records, you would be expecting something fast and hard hitting.The Dear & Departed have become an exception to those expectations. This band has a safe feeling, no matter what your age, you can listen to them. This is only their second album but it sounds like they have been around for what seems like forever. With that 80's feel blended in with modern rock its safe to say that this band knows something about their roots.
The band is based out of Los Angeles, California. Fronted by tattoo artist Dan Smith, as seen on L.A. Ink. Alongside bandmates Scott Sprigg and Darren Parkinson on guitar, as well as Jimmy Walsh on drums, and Neeraj Kane on bass. Smith was born in England but raised in New Zealand where he grew up around bands like The Cure, and New Order. This band has toured with a strange variety of bands including AFI, Saosin and Cursive.
Every song on this album holds its own in a way that is very uncommon in the music scene today. This band is not afraid to show that they still listen to older music, which is always a good thing. It takes a bit of bravery to shy away from a typical sound that is constantly used, and for that I say thank you.
Track to track, you get the feeling that you are floating around your own house. The instrumentation brings in a sad yet optimistic mood, being very creative yet familiar. While the vocals are what dominate the song, everything blends in very well and brings the entire song in together quite nicely. Being produced by New Found Glory guitarist Chad Gilbert(who has also produced for A Day To Remember, H2O, and Fireworks) it brings a very poppy sound.
You will hear a sorts of influence in the music, especially bands from the 80's and early 90's. Ranging from bands like The Smiths and The Cure, to REM to Alkaline Trio. Every Waking Moment keeps a dark atmosphere throughout its entirety. With tracks like "Its Not What You Think" and "Landslide" are very laid back, almost U2-esque tracks, while "Air Supply" boast very upbeat guitar riffs and karaoke worthy vocals while "Miles Away" has a great use of delayed guitar and very steady drumming. My favorite song on this album would be "Star Struck", despite its cheesy name, its a very tight knit song with a great bass line and catchy chorus.
In the end, this album is good and definitely stands out on its own, but I know this band can get a lot more theatrical with their sound and a lot more creative as well. There is certainly room for improvement. The lyrics to every song are very basic though, which is my only complaint about this entire album. I do hope to see more from The Dear & Departed and I wish to see their live performance very soon. If you are a fan of The Cure or any 80's band, I recommend this heavily.