Posted by Stephanie Williams on 09/30 at 05:25 PM
Some artists, like Adele, have mastered how to create a successful, diverse album about a break-up. Daybreak, by Saves the Day, is not even close to the same caliber. The long anticipated seventh studio album dropped on September 13, 2011. This album completes the trilogy that began with Sound The Alarm in 2006 and continued with Under The Boards in 2007. The album holds true to front-man Chris Conley’s ability to put his soul into the music and create a feeling of realness in the tracks to share with listeners. The tracks on the album are individually emotional and easy to connect with, however listening to the whole album at once starts to turn in to a chore. The themes and feelings expressed in the majority of the tracks are in fact too similar and do not provide much variation in the album.
Daybreak kicks off with a 10-minute, 5-movement title track. The song is engaging and tells a story to the listener to jumpstart the album and the messages that the tracks will convey throughout. I really enjoyed this track for the ability of the band to seamlessly transition from one mood to another, to convey the attitudes of each movement.
“Let It Go” is an angrier, darker song to follow “Daybreak” and gives the feeling of having to let go of memories, alluding to a break-up. The song has a strong instrumental background to carry the vocals through the entire track. “1984” brings in another mood swing to the album, with a faster, livelier beat. It is somewhat bizarre because the vocals are stating “I need you, I need your love, I’m trying to rise above, I want you to bring me back to life.” These heavy vocals are not what I would usually expect to hear with such a fast-paced song.
The lyrics in “E” are very nostalgic and bring the listener to the past as the lyrics tell a story ultimately asking: “Can we love again?” An entirely different tone is brought to the album with “Z.” Before this track, the band has had a pretty traditional pop-punk sound and “Z” brings in serious metal interludes. The instrumental breaks make the track sound pretty hard-core, but it was a little out-of-place in that it did not mix well with the traditional sound presented in the rest of the track.
“Deranged & Desperate” brings in an eclectic sound made by the guitars that have not been presented in the album to this point. The different tones kept me interested, but again it was a little strange transitioning from an eclectic sound to traditional in the same song. A Latin instrumental section in “Chameleon” is surprisingly a great success. The song is more ballad-like and asks the question, “Where do we go from here, together for 7 years?”
I was a bit confused by “Living Without Love.” The lyrics would make for a more melancholic track. However the instrumental music was weirdly upbeat. The track was short and repetitive, and referred back to the same themes the rest of the album had already presented. “U” was a dark, mysterious track from the introduction. The lyrics speak of a past romance haunting the present and say “Now I’m here just to hold you in my heart forever.” The vocalist is holding on the the relationship that he has lamented over for the past seven tracks and is expressing that emotion and inability to really let go.
“O” is a track that finally has an optimistic outlook on the situation and changes the mood that had been strongly set by the past nine tracks. It has a softer, hopeful tone that says, “I think I’m starting to see the love I need is inside of me.” It is refreshing to hear a track in the album that isn’t entirely about losing love and having a hopeless outlook on life.
The album comes to a melancholic conclusion with “Undress Me.” The track has the same nostalgic feeling as “E” but I had a difficult time understanding the progression in the song. The entire album so far has told a story of getting over someone and a long relationship. This track does not exactly make sense because “O” spoke about finally having a positive outlook on life and being independent. However “Undress Me” seems like it is referring again to the lost love.
Overall, Daybreak was a good listen, but the themes in each song were extremely repetitive. Every song has the same tones and essentially is the same thing over and over. They all express the inability to let go of a relationship, nostalgia around the relationship, and wishing that everything could just work out in the end. Individually, the tracks are produced well and very easy to connect with emotionally. However, too much of the album focuses on failed relationships and hopeless feelings, while only one track is optimistic near the end.
The album is currently available for purchase on iTunes and Amazon.
Author: Stephanie Williams
Bio: Stephanie Williams is a senior majoring in Public Relations with minors in Business and Psychology. In her free time, she loves to listen to new music, read, see shows and travel. She has had a passion for music and grew up listening to The Beach Boys, Billy Joel and Fleetwood Mac. Although she still loves the oldies her musical tastes have grown to include Ben Folds, The Kooks, David Guetta, and Coldplay as some of her favorite artists today.
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