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Dance Gavin Dance - Artificial Selection (2018)

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8 minutes ago, PhantomFear said:

DGD is one of those bands I could never get into, and I've tried SOO many times. Just not my thing, respect tho to them and everyone who likes them, they are unique af. 

whoa, what the hell was that? Normalcy?

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10 hours ago, xcblackdiamond said:

SPOILERS

 

Dance Gavin Dance has been a mainstay in the scene for over a decade now and their discography spans about 10 projects. That itself is impressive, given many bands call it quits after 3 LPs or so. Somehow throughout all of their albums, they maintain amazing quality and variation Their last album, Mothership, is probably one of my top 5 favorite albums ever. The question is: will that trend continue with Artificial Selection? I'm going to give my opinion on that in a track-by-track analysis.

 

Son of Robot: Ah, the continuation of the 'Robot' series. Though in my opinion, it's more like a successor to 'We Own the Night'. There's a lot to unpack in this opening track. It's layered with Nintendo-esque riffs accompanied by aggressive parts during Jon's verses. This song is the strongest single for me. Tilian uses his voice so well and has done so for years in the way that he raises and lowers his pitch over one use. This song also arguably has one of the best choruses. "It's the way that she combs my hair" is a vintage DGD lyric, and Tilian nails the melody as he sings the last word of the chorus, "coma". One of the many instances on this album where Tilian shows that he still has new things left in the tank.

 

Midnight Crusade: The first single from ArSe understandably raised some concern. It's easily the safest song on the album, so it was a good single to release. There's a very subtle riff during the chorus that I implore everyone to pay attention to. Overall, solid lyrics and high energy. I suspect it'll be especially great live. Also, dat ending. 

 

Suspended in this Disaster: Wow, this song. This song provided one of my best first impressions on the album. Classic DGD riffs to start off, Jon and Tilian trading off verses perfectly too. The way the pre-chorus melds into one of the best choruses I've ever heard is straight up beautiful. Tilian flexes on every vocalist ever on this chorus, wow. Could've ended a liiiittle better, but I can easily forgive that.

 

Care: This song had to grow on me quite a bit. Will Swans kills it with the subtle guitar licks throughout the entire song. Tilian and Jon work together so well on this chorus as well. Lyrically, one of the most relateable songs on the record.  Some might find Care a bit hard to vibe to, but I think it's really chill and provides some summer vibes. Shoutout to the underrated lyrics of "The parasites wont go away, they live inside you." Of course I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the great funky bridge/outro. It brings the more chill song to a stunning climax. I absolutely love the bell/alarm thing before Tilian breaks it down too. 

 

Count Bassy: Only the second new song in the first. I'll say right off the bat that this is one of my favorites. You'd think from the title that it is going to one of their more funky songs. It has a subtle funky vibe, but it's more so on the R&B side I guess, but very spacey. Jon doesn't come in till around 2:40, pretty late for him. Jon is used for the bridge to bring the song to a crescendo and it works so well. The outro is hauntingly beautiful as well, rare group vocals from DGD.

 

Flash: One of the more hyped ones on the KL exclusive preview, I can't say I agree completely. A solid song overall, and has vintage sex-oriented DGD lyrics. Chorus does go hard, but I can't vibe with it as much as many did with the preview. I love the more basic, fast paced chords layered with some of Swan's licks.

 

The Rattler: Jesus Christ, Jon Mess. Many could tell by the title that Jon would go off on this song, many would be correct. He lets it all loose with some of his best lyrics. "I'LL USE YOUR FACE LIKE A DUMB ASS RATTLE." There's some prominent bass at parts and it sounds sooo nice. Tilian's parts, especially on the bridge, work off of Jon's aggression really well. Then it leads back into one of the most heavy moments on the album. Those tones, damn son.

 

Shelf Life: KURT TRAVIS FEATURE. It absolutely sounds like a Happiness song. Kurt is used liberally in such a dream state way while Tilian seems like he's the featured artist instead. This song is a nice come down after the intensity of The Rattler. It has some Eternity Forever vibes too. Not one of my favorites, but it fits really will in the tracklist overall.

 

Slouch: Nice bassy intro and Jon starts it out strong. I think this song will benefit from a quality update the most. There's a lot going on underneath the hood. This is probably my least favorite song on the album, to be honest with one of Tilian's weakest choruses ever. I just don't think the instrumentals and the vocal melodies work together well, I feel nothing from it all. Jon has some solid parts though. I do really like the instrumental bridge though and then Jon kinda saves the whole thing.

 

Story of My Bros: This song is so fun. Absolutely is their pop-punk song, thus I will be blasting this all summer. The intro riff really sets the tone for the song and the drumming reminds me of TSSF. Also "I'm smoking weed out of a pussy filled with money, I like this" is one of my favorite Mess lyrics on the album. Tilian's verse at 1:40 is classic Tilian era DGD lyrics as well.

 

Hair Song: Great tune here. Seems like it'd fit well in a jumpy live setting, so the title of the track fits. 1:15ish starts an exceptional Tilian part. I think overall, this is an average DGD song but some parts really shine. I'd maybe like to read Mess's lyrics to grasp it better.

 

Gospel Burnout: Most of you have heard this one already thanks to the Lord. I do love this song. It's one of the softer ones, but the guitar and bass work are awesome. Tilian has some unique vocal melodies, and Jon does as well. Tilian is sampled in an electronic way and Mess is too actually and it works so well. Ends on a great note too.

 

Bloodsucker: I hope people end up loving this song, because it's certainly one of my favorites all the way at track 13. Jon absolutely slays right off the bat. I think it's awesome and one of the best songs on the record, but I also think this one could use a quality update especially. Lyrically, this song seems one of the more face value, specific ones. Something about corporations or the government taking advantage of people maybe. Tilian's chorus is absolutely infectious and he matches Jon's aggression perfectly. Also 2:00. Wow. Shoutout to the 4:20 run time too.

 

Evaporate: And here we are at the closer, and the longest song on the record as per usual for DGD. It immediately sets itself up to be one of their more unique songs. As most of their closers do, this song has a "larger than life" sound. Andrew of Eidola absolutely helps with that fact as he nails his feature. "You always see right through my, my masquerade" is one of Tilian's best vocal deliveries on the album, maybe ever? The last minute is just pure amazing-ness. Also Jon at 4:24 "I do, I do" reminds me of the song Acceptance Speech, I wonder if it's an intentional callback.

 

And that's all they wrote. Based on my track-by-track analysis, one would think that I love this album. I do, but not as much as I wanted to love it. My review is vastly positive because DGD can't really write a bad song, they're all really good or better. But DGD, at least for me, has insane standards to live up to. As I mentioned, Mothership is one of my favorite albums ever. I tapered my expectations by telling myself it wouldn't beat it, but still. I did the same for Instant Gratification and they DID beat it. I think the album overall sounds like a mix of Happiness and Instant Gratification, but with worse lyrics. And therein lies my main issue. I think the lyrics for the entire album are significantly worse than Mothership. I've listened to the album about 10 times, but a lot of enjoying lyrics has to do with familiarity, knowing the certain lyric is coming and singing it loud. Maybe that's why, but I do think the lyrics still took a step back. No moment touches "if I fall, will you be there to catch me now?" from Philosopher King lyrically, nor does a song touch Inspire the Liars or Frozen One in general. I'd liked to have seen Slouch or maybe Hair song be cut to make it a more complete project. This makes me not as emotionally invested as I am with Mothership or Instant Gratification. Furthermore, instrumentally it's amazing of course. However, I think they're less...catchy/impactful than in the past. I can respect the skill, but I dont vibe with them as much as I'd have liked. Lastly, I think Jon and Tilian took a step back in working together, despite them doing it really well again. It seemed more like they were exchanging verses in Artificial Selection, rather than the PERFECT synergy they had on Mothership. Don't get me wrong, though. It's an amazing album and I'm happy with it, as evident by my track analysis. I just wanted to discuss some gripes at the end. I'm sure I'll love it more as I get acclimated to it too. Rank-wise, I'd go Mothership > IG > ArSe > AS, and I'm someone that loves AS more than the average DGD fan. In fact, there's a chance that I do like Acceptance Speech more than this, well see. Number-wise, I'm gonna go with an 8.5 for now. Thank you if you read this, and enjoy the album! Oh and favorites: Son of Robot, Suspended, Count Bassy, The Rattler, Story of My Bros, Bloodsucker.

There's a shit ton of callbacks on Evaporate, I fucking love it

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Just now, Rastaroni123 said:

There's a shit ton of callbacks on Evaporate, I fucking love it

The Wonder Years did it first :wub:


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I'm gonna give the rest of the album a listen to once it gets a quality update but I absolutely had to listen to Evaporate. Just because I'm such a HUGEE fan of Andrew.

1 minute ago, BRDSX said:

The Wonder Years did it first :wub:

I've actually never listened to those guys. What song are you referencing?

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2 minutes ago, Rastaroni123 said:

I'm gonna give the rest of the album a listen to once it gets a quality update but I absolutely had to listen to Evaporate. Just because I'm such a HUGEE fan of Andrew.

I've actually never listened to those guys. What song are you referencing?

" I just Want To Sell Out My Funeral " and i should say they did with songs on the actual album ( this song was the final track ) . They use all the choruses of every song on the album from beginning to end. This album is beyond amazing, check it out.

 


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10 minutes ago, Rastaroni123 said:

I'm gonna give the rest of the album a listen to once it gets a quality update but I absolutely had to listen to Evaporate. Just because I'm such a HUGEE fan of Andrew.

I've actually never listened to those guys. What song are you referencing?

maybe you'll love it, it is a golden album man, a great band. I do like how DGD used songs from different albums though, same concept just used differently. Outstanding DGD album though prob my favorite.


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1 hour ago, The Top Hat said:

Nice thoughts, though I will say you're just describing a problem with the Tillian era, they found that groovy found and aren't diversifying it from that (not a bad thing, it's a great sound) 

 

I love Tilian. He's my favorite DGD vocalist. However, the parts on this record where Tilian is used overwhelmingly in comparison to Jon don't have that same spark as it did on the last three records with him. His lyrics can be a bit cringeworthy at times and a lot of the time it feels like he's showing off his vocal talent (which has been well established) instead of actually contributing to the song.

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listen to Silent Planet.

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5 minutes ago, moshlyfe said:

 

I love Tilian. He's my favorite DGD vocalist. However, the parts on this record where Tilian is used overwhelmingly in comparison to Jon don't have that same spark as it did on the last three records with him. His lyrics can be a bit cringeworthy at times and a lot of the time it feels like he's showing off his vocal talent (which has been well established) instead of actually contributing to the song.

Tillian is also my favorite, but I think that this album is better than Mothership vocally, on Jon and Tillian side. But I saw your point. I just think it's been this way since he joined imo 

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36 minutes ago, BRDSX said:

The Wonder Years did it first :wub:

Emarosa did it with Re as well

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3 minutes ago, xcblackdiamond said:

Emarosa did it with Re as well

Enter Shikari with The Appeal & The Mindsweep II also

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26 minutes ago, xcblackdiamond said:

Emarosa did it with Re as well

VersaEmerge did it in Lost Tree in  2010 on Fixed At Zero album

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http://www.facebook.com/DosesNJ

New song "Glass Crown" out now!
http://linktr.ee/Doses

 

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7 hours ago, sprdnglkwngs said:

Sigh.... that's now how it works. By converting a lower bitrate into a higher bitrate you are only creating more artifacts. It's like taking a small image and blowing it up and it starts to pixellate.. that's exactly what you're doing. MP3 is a lossy format. Lossy meaning you lose data/information in the file each time you transcode it. You can only transcode Lossless > Lossless or Lossless > Lossy without losing quality. Consider yourself "enlightened".

Thanks for the education lesson lol I had no idea that is how it worked.  I have been converting 128/192/256/VBRs to 320 for years now thinking it would make a difference. I mean to me it sounds a tiny bit better but that could just be my dumb ears hearing what they want to hear lol Now knowing that I am a dumb dumb when it comes to transcodes, I will stop that now unless I have lossless music files. I just think of all that wasted time and effort I put in converting music over the years... makes me sad now lol

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As always, I'm grateful that people take the risk of leaking and uploading this stuff, but I do have a question. Assuming someone got their hands on an actual copy of an album early, why are the first leaks always in such low quality? Wouldn't it just be a difference of choosing a different option when they rip the CD?

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@xcblackdiamond real quick at the end of evaporate they say "you get what you paid for" which is in the chorus of Alex English ?

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25 minutes ago, FlyingPiranha said:

As always, I'm grateful that people take the risk of leaking and uploading this stuff, but I do have a question. Assuming someone got their hands on an actual copy of an album early, why are the first leaks always in such low quality? Wouldn't it just be a difference of choosing a different option when they rip the CD?

 

Have also wondered this myself. 

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44 minutes ago, FlyingPiranha said:

As always, I'm grateful that people take the risk of leaking and uploading this stuff, but I do have a question. Assuming someone got their hands on an actual copy of an album early, why are the first leaks always in such low quality? Wouldn't it just be a difference of choosing a different option when they rip the CD?

there's actually an industry site for rise executives to listen to the album. maybe kl has connections. but I still wonder why they would just up the lower quality to that site

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oh wow you guys

 

Son of Robot. Count Bassy. Flash. Shelf Life. Bloodsucker. 

 

This could be possibly my favorite of theirs, if only for hitting all the songwriting checkboxes that I love them for -- poppy bittersweet melodies and very competent instrumentation. While each of their previous had me cringing a little at some goofiness, but this is a lot more mature.

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After listening to the entire album 3 times, my definite favourites are: 

 

Suspended in Disaster

Slouch

Bloodsucker

Evaporate 

 

I actually think I like this album more than Mothership, it's really solid. 

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this is painful to listen to

and im not talking about rip quality 

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I've had time to listen to the album a good 5-6 times now, and like i said before, it's not as good as MS, but it's still very good. 

 

But holy shit i hate, hate, hate Story of my bros. It sounds like 2005 All Time Low got super drunk and made a song worse than their usual crap. It's the only DGD song that i actively dislike, and have already removed it from my computer so i don't have to skip it each time. I honestly don't understand what they were trying to achieve with this one. 

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4 hours ago, Kanwischer said:

I actually think I like this album more than Mothership, it's really solid

 

Rock solid.

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Why is everyone on this website cumming all over this band?

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I must say this was my first time doing a run through a DGD album, and despite myself being skeptic at the beginning, i honestly liked this a lot.

Very well crafted, there's some top notch musicianship behind it, and Tilian is just a wonderful vocalist. 

Won't be part of the AOTY madness, because even being a great and solid album, it is not so over the top and it gets a bit boring past the half until getting to the last 2/3 songs.

Evaporate is the highlight of the whole tho

 

Edit: will definetly have a run through their whole discography, guess it's about time


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6 hours ago, Hallowdark said:

@xcblackdiamond real quick at the end of evaporate they say "you get what you paid for" which is in the chorus of Alex English ?

Yess glad someone noticed this. Its like summertime gladness when they said "my rock is solid." To Rock Solid

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6 hours ago, razcom said:

there's actually an industry site for rise executives to listen to the album. maybe kl has connections. but I still wonder why they would just up the lower quality to that site

 

I'm new to this whole thing, but if I had to guess... if it's coming from an "industry site" they probably use lower bitrates to sample in case it does leak so there's still incentive for listeners to buy/preorder the full quality album elsewhere.  If it's coming from somewhere else, it may be kept at a lower bitrate by the leaker simply out of respect for the band (incentive for downloaders to pay for it, and if the albums good, maybe even getting them some extra sales from new listeners who like what they hear).

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Going to be blasting Story of My Bros for the rest of the summer, thanks very much for the leak. Can't wait to get my hard copy now. 

 

I get saying AOTY is a meme here but this will straight up be my AOTY short of something very literally blowing my ass off at this point. 

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11 hours ago, Rastaroni123 said:

I'm gonna give the rest of the album a listen to once it gets a quality update but I absolutely had to listen to Evaporate. Just because I'm such a HUGEE fan of Andrew.

I've actually never listened to those guys. What song are you referencing?

Listen to "I just Want to Sell Out My Funeral" - it's incredible how it ties ALL of the album together.

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After a few listens I really love Bloodsucker and Evaporate, this album ends beautifully. This album will have me coming back for a while.

Solid effort, 8.5/10. 

 

best lineup of this band yet.

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8 hours ago, FlyingPiranha said:

As always, I'm grateful that people take the risk of leaking and uploading this stuff, but I do have a question. Assuming someone got their hands on an actual copy of an album early, why are the first leaks always in such low quality? Wouldn't it just be a difference of choosing a different option when they rip the CD?

Barely anyone knows how to rip a cd properly :(

Staff can't teach everyone who wants to submit something how to rip cd's.

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