Review Summary: Crank it up.
Before Daughters released their self-titled album, there weren’t many intricacies to argue about between Hell Songs
and Canada Songs
. Aside from their continuation of spastic riffs, their entire approach was reformulated from Canada
; as Alexis Marshall transformed his vocals from coarse blurts to an elegantly drunk Danzig/Elvis hybrid in addition to realizing what it takes to write songs with some meaningful substance and progressions. So there it was, everything left on the table to judge where Daughters went right and wrong without much of a second thought. But now, Daughters
ked everything up.
, their songwriting expanded beyond Hell Songs
, yet there are less defining moments that were found in tracks like “Recorded Inside a Pyramid,” “Providence by Gaslight,” and “Daughters Spelled Wrong,” and overall less variation among songs. From a production view, Daughters
has a consistent, muddied distortion that masks the actual technicality, where Hell Songs
was particularly transparent and discernible. But where there is a lack of transparency lies some of the most interesting tracks thus far, like “The Theatre Goer,” which wails alongside multiple pounding riffs, each casting to be the defining climax until the final minute takes claim. In “The Unattractive, Portable Head,” Marshall sounds most passionate, as if it is the swan song for the now defunct band as his vocals echo, ‘I want to stand up and be twenty feet tall. I want to reach out and feel nothing at all,’ summarizing a track about becoming immortalized as a statue after a living a landmark life. Right or wrong, it isn’t out of reach to assume “The Unattractive, Portable Head” was about Daughters brief history (lead guitarist Nicholas Sadler, now with Fang Island, and Samuel Walker have left the band) and what they meant to a scene they felt they thrived in, a scene which may not be totally understood yet.
Daughters are one of the few bands in which their highly unorthodox methods can be respected without taking the project as a joke; exhibit A being how they can build around consistently spontaneous, noodling guitar riffs and make it fit like any standard chord progression. Daughters ended their career (until further notice) with a self-titled record that was partially disheartening, as their songwriting only marginally improved because it was countered by a sonic dissonance that never allowed for any significant dynamics. But that’s what Daughters wanted; an album recorded as max volume to be played at max volume. Would you expect anything less?