The body of work compiled by this band legitimately covers the full extent of my musical tastes. I grew up with the broody piano ballads of Counting Crows; These guys can do that. I spent much of my youth in the backseat of my parents' car listening to Tom Petty songs; these guys can do that. Grew to love the twangy alt-country of Ryan Adams; oh, Dan is a master of that as well. I say it often and I'll say it again- Dan Layus is one of the most talented figures in music.
And it blows my mind that they can bust out these simple, straight-forward, heart-on-a-sleeve pop rock songs....and they're perfect. Nobody else is making music like this. I think it takes balls to make music like this.
thank you for saying that their self-titled album wasn't as shitty as everyone made it out to be! although, dan not making that augustana's last batch of songs makes me so unbelievably happy. anyway, this album is worthy of several spins. it's such a grower.
I'm totally digging this album right now. Fantastic review -- I knew you'd be the one to review this. The best parts for the album for me, like he said in his interview, is how he didn't focus on glossy vocals but put more emotion in. Bridge of Youth is Wasted, for example -- it's gritty and iperfect but shows his meaning and conviction to what he's singing, and I love it. I've been getting more into Born in the USA and Boys and Girls in America, and they both (moreso the Hold Steady) do the same thing.
The vocalist mentioned looking at a new Americana album -- what are your thoughts on that? Something more like Love in the Air, but with more substance?
After 5 or 6 listens through I still stand by my first conclusion...worst album of their collection. I do really like the songs "Say You Want Me", "According to Play", and "Remember Me". "Alive", and "I Really Think So" are alright, but that's only 5 of 12 (including the bonus tracks) that I enjoy.
I absolutely hate "Fit Together", it reminds me of a shitty lame Journey song, yuck. Not a fan of the chorus of "Ash and Ember", and the cornyness of "Youth is Wasted on the Young" makes me feel like the lame 31 year old that I am.