The Dear Hunter is the ambitious project by former keyboardist/
sequencer/ singer of The Receiving End Of Sirens, Casey
Crescenzo. The album has elements of gospel, soul, hardcore,
jazz, and orchestral rock, taking signatures from opposite corners
of the music spectrum and finding a melodic middle ground for
them. The Dear Hunter is a bit of a family affair with members
of Crescenzo's family brought on board including the vocals of
Judy Crescenzo, the drumming of Nick Crescenzo,
and the organ sessions of Phil Crescenzo. Also, contributing
vocal parts is As Tall As Lions' lead singer Dan Nigro,
whose band toured extensively with TREOS last year.
The Dear Hunter's debut album Act I: The Lake South, The River
North is the story of a boy from his creation until his untimely
death, bringing to music his journey with themes relating to lust,
deceit, greed, and hunting. With only 8 tracks on the album, there
is a sense that this is a young life cut short, not fully reaching
the maturation of old age. Beginning with "Battesimo Del
Fuoco," the track resounds with Casey's a cappella-rich vocals
undertoned by a haven of gospel hued choruses heralding the birth
of the boy - The Dear Hunter, born to a mother who is a harlot
and a life plagued with struggles from the start.
The album proceeds with orchestral rock concentrates casting a cinematic
glow. The jazz-coned trumpet intervals on "The Lake South"
segues into hardcore textures for "City Escape." The vocal
harmonies and carousel-prow piano melody is haunting and sets the
stage as the plot thickens with "Inquiry Of Ms. Terri" when
Casey sings, "The cavalier she hopes of him is dissonance with
experience/ The boy who grows with knife in hand to fend for her becomes
a man while she plays fake affection and carefully lacks objection
to her gentlemen callers twisted desire."
The dark shadows created by the orchestral rock movements have
theatrical properties and spears into the core of the story. The
listener becomes engulfed in the swirling shadows of these tracks.
"1978" features As Tall As Lions, Dan Nigro on additional
vocals and combined with Casey's, the tune has a levitating stance.
The shadowy trumpet flumes return on "The Pimp And The Priest"
extending the plot from the boy trying to survive, to a young
man whose desperation makes him susceptible to the two forms of
people that welcome unwanted souls - the primp and the priest.
The boy strives for the river, believing that the water will redeem
him and give him peace.
The folk/rock blazes on "His Hands Matched His Tongue"
have a Matt Costa solemnity, but with more emotive vocal
peaks. The finale "The River North" is a trailing piano
etude that feels sparse and unfinished. The album concludes with
the applause of an audience and the warm-up session from a chamber
music recital. The listener can't help but think there is more
to The Dear Hunter's story.
Casey Crescenzo sees songs with a cinematic appeal and he achieved
that goal with The Dear Hunter's debut album. While he was in
TREOS, he told AmoreMag.com about the making of TREOS album Between
The Heart And The Synapse: "From day one we had a very
good idea as to the blueprint of the album. We had a sort of script
of 'scenes' that needed to be accomplished. It was very much like
filming a movie and in the middle, it could feel disjointed and
chaotic, but when you took a step back you began to understand
Act I has appeal musically and thematically and is Casey
Crescenzo's most ambitious project to date. Joining Casey on tour
will be Erick Serna on guitar, Luke H. Dent on keyboards,
and Sammy Dent on drums as they embark on a nationwide
1. Battesimo Del Fuoco
2. The Lake South
3. City Escape
4. The Inquiry Of Ms. Terri
6. The Pimp And The Priest
7. His Hands Matched His Tongue
8. The River North
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