Saturday, October 16, 2010

Albums2010 #28: Days Of The New

Kudos to The Quiet Man for adding to this list of Albums2010. He described it to me as 'folk grunge' and that description pretty much nails it on the head. I had never heard of Days of the New before sitting down and listening to this CD, but I'm glad I did- and I'm glad I had the patience to sit through and listen to the whole thing, because it was totally worth it.

But: initially, I was dubious about this CD. At first, there didn't seem to be a whole lot that set Days Of The New apart from other grunge music from the period. I honestly listened to the first track and wondered if The Quiet Man had mis-labelled his disc and given me an Alice in Chains album instead- but the more I listened the album, the more the apt descriptor of 'folk grunge' came to the fore. By the back half of the album, the acoustic skills of lead guitarist/vocalist Trevor Meeks become evident and it becomes a thing to listen to. The delicacy of his guitar skills becomes obvious and it's then (by about track #9 or so) that the album really takes off.

I feel like I'm meandering a little bit, but its kind of hard for me to really dig into a band that I just discovered. Does that make sense? Other albums from bands you've heard of, you can get all enthusiastic about- new bands, you don't really have a lot to go on other than what you've just heard. Don't get me wrong: Days Of The New did, in fact, blow my mind. It required me to exercise some patience at first, but in the end, it proved to be a remarkably pleasant surprise. DOTN took the traditional mainstream rock sound of the early 90s (namely grunge) and did something interesting and innovative with it.

An artistic aside: every Days Of The New Album features a twisted old tree on the cover-- and in case you're wondering, Trevor Meeks dishes as to why:
I’ve seen this picture on the wall of a tree, that many people have seen, but no one has seen it like I have, and I have this relationship with the tree, and it’s gotten me through years, and I got this vision. The tree is my emblem; I have a tree belt.

It is my superhero. It was a painting on the wall that a lot of people had already seen. I had a moment and a vision. Tears were in my eyes. I went into the picture, and I found myself sitting in the picture. Part of Asperger’s is associating sound with vision, so I see what I hear. That’s how I write. That’s how I continue to write my records.

Every album also was associated with a particular color- this one, as you can see is yellow- but I really like this aspect of the band. Music can be artistic in and of itself, but taking the music and adding a truly artistic aspect to me makes it just a little more fascinating to learn about and listen too.

Patience will win you great rewards in the end- stick with this album and you'll hear something amazing, innovative and worth listening too. Days Of The New might be a little obscure for most people, but the hidden gems are often the ones most worth digging up.

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