| If you're looking for some interesting new talent to listen to, Days Like These is the way to go. Fans of Maroon Five will enjoy DLT's sexually-charged pop beat songs "Charmed" and "Control Freak", while those looking for a less-played sound will take solace in the 30 Seconds To Mars-esque "Like Bombs" and "99 Cent Dreams". The band drolly lists "life" as their influence, but for those of you who like a little more specificity, contemplate perhaps the late 80's (check out the piano and brass in "Caution"); or the more recent, faster Spill Canvas; consider the higher-class of boy band; standard-fare "Alternative"; those're the kind of influences that seem to show up in DLT's sound. Days Like These stands out, though, for its variety in style. The songs are distinct, without any mundane umbrella theme; this album is not solely "I miss my girlfriend" or "I hate my girlfriend", nor is it necessarily a "To hell with Bush" or "My tears hurt my eyes" album, and I'm impressed that they've branched out so in terms of subject matter. Here is an album that doesn't cater to one crowd. The laid-back among you will find songs to import, while the would-be-protesters of today will also find something to suit them (protesters should probably listen to "Justify" first).
Just to touch on a few of my favourite tracks; the semi-haunting keyboard of the slower rock ballad "Generation RX" really appeals to me. DLT's sound isn't the orgy of competing guitars that I've been listening to lately, and so I find their sound relatively simple, and very polished. Groomed, perhaps is the word I'm looking for--they maintain a good, solid song the whole track through, which is one thing you've got to hand to the pop genre: not many people can stand to hear metal or screamo or indie or folk on the radio, but play a Days Like These song, and your roving, scanning attention will be caught. Tack on to that the fact that I'm a sucker for emo, and the emotions of this song really resonate with me, and you've got a winner.
"Charmed", or the Lolita song, needs to be played at parties more. Softer-core Nine Inch Nails in content, Maroon Five in beat and style, Eagles in mellow-cool guitar/piano impressiveness. I've already sent this song to one of my friends so that it can be her and her new boy's song. It's catchy, it's racy, it's pop rock. A saccharine song for excited young couples.
With "The Threat of a Good Example", you get a sense of what I mean when I say that the album branches out. "The Threat" is cryptic but catchy--it has the dominant theme of retaliation, but listening closely to the lyrics doesn't take you much farther beyond that. You listen to it and get a good sense of "Rawr! No!", but the lyrics are either too referential or too general to latch on to and murmur over and over in your sleep. Just because it's not Oberst, though, doesn't mean it's not noteworthy--it bears mentioning that this song, a nervously rocking piece of generalized angst, is on an album together with a song like "Charmed", wedged in between a song about losing inhibition and one about seeking peace of mind.
For all that, I enjoyed Inventure. Not every song did it for me, but enough of them got my attention that I'm willing to check out their debut album, Charity Burns Green. It's an eclectic sound, for an eclectic band that seems to be capable of writing more than one kind of song--I highly approve. So give them a listen before you spring for the album, and I'm sure you'll find at least a few songs that appeal.
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1) Control Freak
<< 2) The Threat of a Good Example >>
3) Help Wanted
4) Somehow Saturn
7) Generation RX
8) Like Bombs
10) The Queen
11) Welcome Home
12) 99 Cent Dreams