Brand New
Deja Entendu


4.0
excellent

Review

by Jorn van Schaïk USER (172 Reviews)
March 8th, 2009 | 74 replies | 5,770 views


Release Date: 2003 | Tracklist

Review Summary: As Brand New goes on and travels through the motions, it becomes apparent that in this album, even though originality took a back seat, the album is an accomplished whole.

It's sort of funny how some "emo" bands get pegged as overly trite and similar to each other. As with everything, similar bands invite similar comparisons, similar crossover, similar traits, and Brand New's shtick seems derived from the same thing that all their contemporaries did at this point in time; during the rise of pop-punk Brand New rose with the rest of them, and certainly, someone could definitely pinpoint Taking Back Sunday as an influence, or something like New Found Glory (though this is better).

And even though Brand New's formula is pretty much a double-edged sword (tunes at the expense of originality, which to choose, which to choose), they pretty much got the balance right. Because what this record lacks (innovativity) it makes up for with more-than-clever lyrical twists of tongue, tunes to die for, and the duality between screaming power chords and moody, brooding acoustic rock. Even the song titles are typical of what they're playing: "Okay, I Believe You, But My Tommy Gun Don't" just reeks of the same types of pretense that all their peers seem to so lovingly indulge in.

Thankfully, Brand New gots the songwriting to cope with the bad titles. "The Quiet Things That No One Ever Knows" may be deliberately awkwardly titled, as it's probably one of the most explosive songs on the record. But the guitar melody entering at the beginning just makes it super fit for radio play: it's been a while since I heard a hook that infectious. The rest of the album is like that, too. "Sic Transit Gloria...Glory Fades" is one of those typical songs where pop punk harmonising meets some more screechy yelled vocals, but the uptempo drive and beat makes it work in tandem (rather than the awful tripe other bands seem to produce).

The other end of the stick is the acoustic rock stuff, which takes their cues from the usual suspects (Dashboard Confessional meets Coldplay). Most of the time this doesn't work as well as the more driving, energetic songs, as for some reason Lacey doesn't seem to find his voice as well as he should on these songs; he seems to come off as a bit too whiny (though the hook on The Boy Who Blocked His Own Shot is still amazing as ever). And even though Lacey's seemingly sombre on every song, moreso the acoustic ones, the slow opening dirge of "Tautou" with Lacey's continuous drawl of "I'm sinking like a stone in the sea" sets the mood aptly and rapturously for the rest of the record.

As Brand New goes on and travels through the motions, it becomes apparent that though this record is doused in negativity, it seems as if they have gone beyond the sour teenage tales of broken relationships, and moved into more mature territory; though the old phrasings still apply on occasion ("I am paid to make girls panic"). It's almost like the pop punk album for coming of age; as Lacey explores deeper and deeper, not merely enveloping himself in tales of romance, but also of cancer ("Guernica"), it becomes apparent that in this album, even though originality took a back seat, the album is an accomplished whole.

Is this worth a purchase? Most likely if your twenty bucks are easily spent, and if you dig the genre and style on display. But surprisingly, it's also a good representation of what this genre has to offer without becoming an annoying chore to sit through. It's packed full of crystal clear tunes and good lyrics; so much that even a less-than-aficiniado might chew on this pop-punk cherry pie and savour the taste a bit. It's still sticky sweet, like the rest of it, but at least you don't feel fat afterwards, like you don't fit into your skinny jeans anymore. I guess that's where this differs from common "emo" pop punk music.



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user ratings (3341)
Chart.
4.1
excellent
other reviews of this album
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Comments:Add a Comment 
JumpTheF**kUp
March 8th 2009



2710 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

why did you mention the word emo so many times it makes you sound stupid (i know you're not)

SeaAnemone
March 8th 2009



20027 Comments


I agree on many points... the hooks (like the ones you mentioned in The Quiet, Sic Transit, and Boy Who Blocked) are the main attraction of this album.

Digging: Natural Snow Buildings - The Night Country

OllieS
March 8th 2009



2030 Comments


liked the summary

VicariousIntent
March 8th 2009



1593 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Good review. I still don't really know how I feel about this album to this day. You're completely right, they sacrifice originality to make some catchy, emotional songs. The music is heartfelt, there's no doubt about that. And lyrically, the album is a monster. It's great, but I dunno, some days it just doesn't click with the way "Devil And God" does every time.
Very good review though, it's a smooth read.

LiveForMusic
March 8th 2009



64 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Love this CD. Not the most original thing ever, but it still gets me every time.

foreverendeared
March 8th 2009



14678 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thankfully, Brand New gots the songwriting
just a little typo. great review

Altmer
March 8th 2009



5652 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

an intentional typo, but ok.

also i mentioned emo *twice*.

iarescientists
March 8th 2009



5863 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

why did you mention it at all?

foreverendeared
March 8th 2009



14678 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

oh, my bad.
i don't mind the "emo" mentions because i understand that the general public calls this "emo"

Altmer
March 8th 2009



5652 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

to poke fun at people calling it emo when it's not. hence why emo is in inverted commas.

iarescientists
March 8th 2009



5863 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

let's make fun of people who think this is emo when none of those people are registered members of this site

you showed those fags!

Altmer
March 8th 2009



5652 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

there are more people that read these reviews than just you. if I can elicit a snigger somewhere, I will. it sucks for you that you have no sense of humour.

Relinquished
March 8th 2009



24924 Comments


The way the public makes emos look is just stupid. 'Hey emo faggot, why don't you cut your wrists and drown in the flood of blood coming out?' All the kids are taught to think all emos are like this.This Message Edited On 03.08.09

JumpTheF**kUp
March 8th 2009



2710 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

the fact that you're mentioning emo at all in this review, regardless of whether it's in inverted commas and intended as a joke or not, just makes you sound ignorant and as dumb as the people you're making fun of tbh

Lucid
Contributing Reviewer
March 8th 2009



7023 Comments


no need to be such an emo kid about it seriously

Digging: FKA twigs - LP1

JumpTheF**kUp
March 8th 2009



2710 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

/wrists

Relinquished
March 8th 2009



24924 Comments


just sayin... but kids shouldn't take this kind of stuff so seriously

Mikedrummer
March 8th 2009



276 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Emo is just a label dumbasses use to label music they don't like. Are Brand New emotional? Sure. Are they overdramatic? Maybe on the first record. Are they talented? Fuck yes.

natey
March 8th 2009



4170 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

emo is all about feeling, and boys kissing

gaslightanthem
March 8th 2009



5209 Comments


i like emo music i'm pretty sure it's a genre



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