Dance Gavin Dance, 2020
The time has come for me to write my first review for my favorite band, Dance Gavin Dance. As someone who has listened to the band religiously for over a decade, I have seen them flourish with a consistent line-up for the past six years. The combination of soaring clean vocalist Tilian Pearson, innovative guitarist Will Swan, chaotic unclean vocalist Jon Mess, groovy bassist Tim Feerick, and grounded drummer Matt Mingus have persisted and created four cohesive albums together that are devoid of filler and full of memorable moments. My expectations are grand for the band’s ninth album, Afterburner, so let’s dive right in!
“Prisoner” was the album-announcement single and kicks off Afterburner. From the first measure, a complex dual-guitar riff immediately throws off first-time listeners. It’s still hard to wrap my head around the progression of these triplets, but that’s what we get with Swancore staple Sergio Medina working with Will on this song. Exploring the topics of religion and its subsequent confinement, the profoundness of the lyricism takes hold from the get-go. My favorite part of this song is the first post-chorus where all we can hear is yet another one of Will’s patented funk riffs that’s hard not to jive to. I distinctly remember being in my workplace when it dropped early in the morning February 22nd, dancing along at my standing desk and feeling on top of the world with this groovy piece.
When Will Swan, guitarist of Dance Gavin Dance, Secret Band, Sianvar, and Royal Coda started up Blue Swan Records, he crafted an outlet to sign some of the freshest, most inspired progressive post-hardcore bands in the scene. This includes talented acts like Wolf & Bear, Icarus the Owl, Eidola, and several other staples. Dubbed “swancore”, this unique, gripping sound has appealed to a niche for several years now; in 2020, though, the time to really get excited for the genre is here.
The time has come to feast your eyes and ears on another quality song from post-hardcore legends Dance Gavin Dance in the form of their latest single, “Lyrics Lie.”
Today, the band released a video for the song documenting the creation of the Afterburner mural in Sacramento, California, to hype up the release of the band’s ninth studio album ahead of its release on April 24th.
This track is beyond phenomenal. From Will Swan’s unreal riffage from the start, to Tilian flexing his unclean vocals in the post-chorus in a trade-off with Jon Mess, to the chorus that I simply cannot get out of my head, this track is an immediate top-5 in the band’s long discography. My excitement for the band’s latest release has grown immensely with this new song and I cannot wait to get my hands on Afterburner!
Dance Gavin Dance never seem to stop churning out music. Releasing 8 full-length albums since 2007’s debut Downtown Battle Mountain, the band’s 9th album – Afterburner – just got announced for release. Even in between album cycles, DGD have often released standalone singles that make you wonder if they ever really rest. The answer? Probably not. This time around, though, the album will feature many guest appearance from notable musicians in the scene.