The five piece outfit This Day And Age have shed the punk
rock urgency of their debut album Always Leave The Ground
from 2004 and gone with a more melodic rock base for their second
outing The Bell And The Hammer. The music has the floating
platforms of notes like Inkwell and As Tall As Lions
giving the songs a more elated feel like Mae and Open
Hand. The quintet from Buffalo, New York have made their music
unpredictable, in a way, by going with a current that is more
adult contemporary and mainstream than their first delivery, but
also a direction that no one saw coming or would expect from This
Day And Age in their photogenic composites.
Produced by Ed Rose (The Spill Canvas, Slowride,
The Get Up Kids), band mates Jeffrey Martin on lead
vocals and guitar, Steven Padin on drums and percussion,
Michael Carroll on guitar, Joseph Secchiaroli on
bass guitar, and Kelly Sciandra on Rhodes piano and French
Horn, kept an experimental element in their verses creating tones
and series of their own making and configuring them into coherent
melodic bundles that float with a magical effect. This Day And
Age show that you can keep your individuality and links to music
factions like ambient, modern country, experimental rock, and
electro-pop, and make commercial sounding music from kegs of influences.
The album is feel good music on an ethereal plane. The shimmering
guitar blades on "Always Straight Ahead" are beautifully
fondled by the bass flinches. The vocals are sensually poured
over the melodic flourishes and the echoes add an luminous tonality
gliding over the beats. "Second Star To The Right"
has melodic rock buckles like the reverberating guitar solo
in the center. The words are infused with love: "Closer
to the stars is where we ought to be/ And I'll never arrive
if you're not there with me/ Don't give up on me/ Your love
is like the sea/ It's surrounding me."
The entire album is a profusion of sentimental love which I
guess would be nauseating for some people and totally welcoming
for others. When records require a label to warn the public
about explicit lyrics, This Day And Age needs to warn audiences
of their large doses of love soaked melodies. Even on the lamenting
tracks like "More Of A Climb Less Of A Walk," the
notes are uplifting and the words drenched with sentiment and
love. The tempo progressions relax and build up with a liquidity
The melodic country tones on "Building A Home" are
doled out harmoniously without sounding too country or too pop,
but exhibiting a melodic balance that transcends delineations
in music genres. This Day And Age crosses over defined categories
and bridges their sound with influences from the global music
pool. If anything this album shows that This Day And Age have
a more globally-enhanced sound like the piano overture on "Of
Course We've All Seen The Sun" which has an Elton John
strength. The mid-tempo number is intense without being overly
dramatic. The final number "All We Thought We Could"
is a ballad with intriguing guitar twists and complementing piano
segments in the underbelly of the arrangement.
This Day And Age have crafted a masterful album that is carefully
portioned, melodically built, and technically complex and challenging.
The intricate trellises embellish the tunes and segue the tempo
progressions. Lacking is the punk urgency of their first full
length album but in it's place are melodic rock verses that
flow with a worldly artisan's proficiency.
1. Always Straight Ahead
2. Second Star To The Right
3. The Bell And The Hammer
4. More Of A Climb Than A Walk
5. Sara Poor Sara
7. Walking Contradictions
8. Building A Home
9. Winter Winter Spring
10. Practice Makes Better
11. Of Course We've All Seen The Sun
12. All We Thought We Could
e-mail the chief
Like this article?
it to a friend!