From Failure by Design, to The No Seatbelt Song, to Sic Transit Gloria…Glory Fades, to Sowing Season, to Degausser, to You Won’t Know, to Not The Sun, I have been taken on a trip that has helped me deal with some of the hardest situations in my life. Brand New has always had my back for the times where there was no way to convey to someone else how you feel. When there was no way to make you feel better than to blast The Devil and God Are Raging Inside Me, these gentlemen from the east coast made sure I and many others could find solace.
The boys from New York have delivered another golden album for my darker days. If this is somehow your first time hearing about Brand New, the band is known for their dark, melodic songs crammed with enough emotion to make a tear streak down Simon Cowell’s face. For you old school fans out there, rest assured knowing that the lineup is still what it was from long ago and Brand new has only gotten better.
Today, their latest and greatest album, Daisy hit the shelf. I was afraid when I got to hear it for the first time, because I had no idea what direction they would take for this album. I’m happy to report that front man Jesse Lacey knew the rule of not fixing what ain’t broke. Instead, we see the band taking what they did before, and making it better.
For instance, the album opening with a piece of the old school song On Life’s Highway by Betrand Brown before rupturing into the rest of Vices, the songs first track, got me feeling I was in for the next level to the Brand New contingency plan.
We are confronted with many reoccurring themes on this album, with more of a mixture of what has been done before, instead of one new direction. Love and loss, with the plight we face in our relationships is painted by Jesse with his buoyant imagery with the track Bed. We also get that familiar tone of confrontation between friends, namely lying and the pointing-the-finger with fourth track, Gasoline.
I’ve noticed that the lyrics from all Brand News albums have referred to beds in some way; with it being sleeping in the bed that you made, or drama with a woman amongst the sheets. I found this almost comforting, because it truly is where deep, arduous conversations with significant others are born.
This album had so many great tracks, it’s been a task attempting to single out what I loved the most, but let’s try and break it down, like the self esteem of those poor little girls on Toddlers and Tiaras.
The second track, Bed, was a sharp- tongued response to an apparent fight between lovers. The simple, repeating chorus, “Laid her on the bed” (which later changes to “Lie to all your friends”) kept me hooked, with the verses that call out not only the woman, but her sister as well. This was one of the many tracks that hit close to home with things that some of us men have experienced, but with an imagery that we have fought to produce on paper.
Speaking of painting a picture with paramount perfection, the eighth track, Bought a Bride was a new direction for the band I feel. The lowdown bass riffs and dual channel voices kept me locked in with the lyrics calling out our society that is a paid-in-advance paradigm we can’t avoid.
Track nine, Daisy, is the quintessential composition of a self-loathing song that would have set the tone for a slow-motion (or plastic bag blowing) American Beauty scene. Bringing in the reoccurring element of faith (or a lack thereof, I can’t say for sure) in God, it stands out as a classic Brand New creation. Old fans might think of it as Millstone part two.
Even though the entire album brought out emotions from different parts in my life, I’d say that At the Bottom (also the albums single) held the strongest grip on the state of my life at the moment. Maybe not completely as far as lyrics are concerned, but the chorus rang true for me, and what I’m sure will be many others when they hear it. Again, the heavy imagery and mystic metaphors make this the definition of a classic Brand New track. Even down to the everybody-sing-along words of the echoing chorus and familiar guitar songs that we have loved since the bands 2000 creation.
Brand New will always hold a place in my heart for their ability to bring out emotions that I sometimes feel like I forget. I’m happy to have this reminder, with Daisy, a sure pick for one of my favorite albums of the year. Thanks to Denise V. for getting me to ping this one on the radar, and Melissa at Total Assault for getting it to me early to test out before bring this review to you. The album is out now, so fans new and old can experience another chapter in music legacy as I did.
Until next time my friends,