Dump Eagles, the band’s sophomore full-length album, is a thorough conversation full of arguments, explanations and resolutions.
As a kid who grew up listening to a lot of punk and hardcore music, I’ve always considered myself a bit of a connoisseur. When I listen to a new album or hear band for the first time, I’m always curious to hear what they bring to the table, how they play with the form and what if anything might they be adding to the endless streams of albums that came before them.
But then there are those times when it’s all-systems-go and who gives a shit about the Carter Sliding Scale Of Aggressive Formulas ©.
Such is the case with Dump Eagles, the sophomore full-length album from Verses. Now, I’m not saying I didn’t give it the old ‘deep listen’, but after a few tracks, I knew this album would check all the boxes for me.
Verses are Fredericton-based band who could fit into the following categories (if that’s how your brain works): crossover-metal, melodic-hardcore, post-hardcore, etc. You could also combine all of these into one pigeonholing super-genre like melodic-post-hardcore-crossover-metal, but who has the time? You get the idea.
Most of this album was recorded by Scott Miller (Anthesis/Frig Dancer/Ancient Temple Recordings) at his home studio in Quispamsis. Over the past few years Miller has become the go-to guy for creating and capturing massive studio guitar tones (the opening track off Anthesis’ The Age Of Self is nearly enough to rattle your bowels loose, even when listening through ear buds). And Miller’s ear for depth is definitely present on this album. The guitars are huge. I mean, HUGE. Yet they don’t dominate the mix. They carry the melody well and build upon the underlying rhythm of each track. I know that sounds like basic Band Craft 101 but on a lot of releases (regardless of genre), understanding where or maybe simply how to present your sound in a truly balanced manner isn’t always at the forefront of the final mix. With this in mind, Miller presents the band in the best possible light.
So let’s talk about the music. Dump Eagles is adventurous and complex. The band has obviously put a lot of thought into how each song is structured, a necessity when pairing aggressive rhythms with engaging, two-pronged melody lines that come from both the group’s dueling vocals and virulent guitar leads.
There’s a lot of call and answer happening although it’s not as blatant as simply echoing phrases back and forth. Question and answer? Point, counterpoint? Me, you? Us and them? Whatever the case may be, Dump Eagles is a thorough conversation full of arguments, explanations and resolutions with rhythm, melody and vocals each sharing equal space at the podium.
Dump Eagles comes out on CD and as a digital download on September 28.
September 28 | Dump Eagles album release show | The Capital Complex | w/ Anthesis and OVAV | 10 p.m. $6 | View Event