Review: The Dear and Departed, Chapters EP

Artist: The Dear and Departed
Album: Chapters EP
Genre: Indie / New Wave
Label: Equal Vision Records

Coming out of the heart of Los Angeles the brand new EP Chapters, The Dear and Departed have put a twist on the new wave and indie fusion we have been hearing as of late. If you are familiar with the show L.A. Ink at all then these guys might seem familiar as members of the group are returning characters. In fact, on one episode, tattoo artist and band member Dan Smith was visited in the recording studio by co-worker Kat Von D so she could sit in on a recording session. Besides that fact, they have also made a strong name for themselves out on the West Coast through shows, recording, etc and hope to expand that following even more with this digital release through Equal Vision Records.

The first song, “Matter of Time”, has an Angels and Airwaves feeling intro to it but then plays more into an indie rock attitude. Then it carries the unique sound of an 80’s English rock through the other songs in this peaceful endeavor as it progresses. As the EP progressed, the next song that caught my ears attention was “Tambourine Love” which provided an eerie/vacant tone with some solid bass lines incorporated. It shows that the band can stretch the sound they’re going for while making the audience feel entranced in the melody.

Later, I came to realize that the truly standout song on the record was saved for last. “There for the Taking,” which has a Cure kind of feeling to it while spreading the perception of the line in the song, “Grey faces seem so cavalier, and they keep watching you”.

The Dear and Departed have taken on some pretty big names to help produce this EP. It is produced by New Found Glory guitarist, Chad Gilbert, and engineered by Paul Miner (New Found Glory, H2O, Atreyu) as well as Chris Vrenna, whose production resume includes some names such as U2 and the Smashing Pumpkins in addition to being the drummer/programmer for Nine Inch Nails, Marilyn Manson and Gnarls Barkley.

I can’t help to feel that the downfall of Chapters though is that all of the songs on the EP have the same kind of tune and progression to them. The upside is that this is just a small taste of what is to come from these guys and we can only expect the boundaries to be pushed further. I feel that The Dear and Departed will create quite the buzz with audiences at each show while maintaining the same easy west coast vibe they are putting out through the airwaves.

Score: 7/10

Written by Grant Trimboli

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