Eisley
I'm Only Dreaming


4.5
superb

Review

by gamal USER (2 Reviews)
February 18th, 2017 | 21 replies


Release Date: 2017 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Eisley are just as whimsical as ever, but don't lower your expectations just yet.

On my first listen to I'm Only Dreaming, it is immediately apparent that there is an emotional sincerity here on this record that is absolutely captivating. It's an album about vocalist Sherri DuPree's love for her husband and her children, but it never feels boring or overwrought. It sounds as comforting as the relationships DuPree sings about so beautifully throughout the record's twelve tracks. DuPree gives her best vocal performance yet, dipping into a lower register on Louder Than A Lion, among others. Mixed with producer Will Yipp's dreamy production style, the band sounds almost other worldly. Not to mention like a band at the top of their game.

On previous outings the songwriting was shared between the three DuPree sisters, which worked absolutely fine - but listening to I'm Only Dreaming it is easy to see the benefit of Sherri finally shouldering nearly all of the writing. This record feels much tighter thematically, with less disparity between each song. As a fan, I was very interested in seeing how Sherri becoming the sole vocalist would play out - but she pulls it off with aplomb, so well in fact that long time fans may not even miss hearing Stacy and Chauntelle taking the vocal reins. The harmonies between the three sisters were always a focal point on previous albums, but Sherri pulls off plenty of gorgeous harmonies all on her own here. Sherri sounds absolutely in her element on this album, as if fronting the band on her own was always the way it was supposed to be.

DuPree has declared her love for bands like Sunny Day Real Estate in the past, and the influence is very apparent here. Songs like Always Wrong, Song For The Birds and When You Fall all hit harder than previous Eisley records. These songs effortlessly mix 90's pop punk, indie and expertly written pop together. When You Fall even has an almost California surf, Best Coast feel to it. A guest appearance from DuPree's husband, Say Anything vocalist Max Bemis, on Song For The Birds feels very fitting as the band power through some of their most pop punk songs on this record - without ever feeling dated.

However, the band do step into some new territory on songs such as Louder Than A Lion and Sparking, with synths and drum machines holding these songs up. Eisley have played around with keyboards and synths before, but never like this. It's a welcome change for a band that has seemed resistant to change in the past. Don't get me wrong, this album is not a massive departure from the classic Eisley sound - they are still as whimsical as ever - but there is enough growth and heart here to possibly make it the best album Eisley has ever put out.


user ratings (42)
3.3
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
gamal
February 18th 2017


8 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This is my first ever review so any feedback would be greatly appreciated!

SowingSeason
Moderator
February 18th 2017


32091 Comments


Good first review for sure. Just a cosmetic suggestion: [ i ]text[ /i ] (without the spaces in the brackets) will italicize the album title, and most seasoned writers do 'song title' or "song title"...feel free to do your own thing though! I like that you did more than just take a song by song approach to reviewing this and that there is general commentary on the album as a whole. My only advice would be to expand it even more next time, citing even more examples and adding more of your unique takeaways from things.

Digging: Lana Del Rey - Norman Fucking Rockwell

Divaman
February 18th 2017


4126 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Nice job. I'm looking forward to this album. Glad to see someone jumped right on the review.

Digging: Batushka - HOSPODI

Mythodea
February 18th 2017


4274 Comments


great review. I also learned a new word! (aplomb)

gamal
February 18th 2017


8 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Thank you for the feedback! I will definitely try to elaborate more in future reviews. Also putting the album title/song titles in italics/quotations never even occurred to me but I should probably do that in future just for tidiness, lmao.

Rigma
February 19th 2017


861 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

oh shit have to check this

Rigma
February 19th 2017


861 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

damn i'm kinda disappointed now lol

gamal
February 19th 2017


8 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Haha I get that. I'm a big Eisley fan and I went into it really wanting to like it. It exceeded my expectations but it seems to be getting mixed reviews in other places so I can see why it may not live up to other people's expectations!

Rigma
February 19th 2017


861 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

yeah not really my cup of tea, sounds like radio fodder. can understand why people like it i guess

Gyromania
February 19th 2017


28319 Comments


How much would I enjoy this if my favorite Eisley album is the valley?

gamal
February 19th 2017


8 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I think lyrically it's closer to The Valley than Currents was. It's probably a cross between Room Noises and The Valley, stylistically and lyrically. Put it this way - if you enjoyed Sherri's contributions a lot before you'll probably like this a lot.

Gyromania
February 19th 2017


28319 Comments


Yeah I think this might be the album I listen to tomorrow. Wasn't crazy about the last two Eps but loved the valley. Room noises has some great tunes too

Snake.
February 19th 2017


21798 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

christian coffee shop

Digging: American Football - American Football (LP3)

Riodectros
February 21st 2017


44 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Definitely a good choice for folks who liked The Valley. I miss Stacey, but Sherri does a good job holding down the fort by herself. The electronic drums are so out of place it hurts, but otherwise I like the instrumentation.

Corney
February 23rd 2017


188 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

This was a very big disappointment. The instrumentation on this album is extremely questionable. Rabbit hole is the best song on the album. Always wrong, Defeatist, and Louder than a lion are salvageable.

Skoop
February 26th 2017


2147 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Really missing the atmospheric direction they were heading in on the last album. Still, this is pleasant enough.

Atari
Staff Reviewer
February 26th 2017


24894 Comments


should have known Max Bemis would make an appearance on here haha

this is pretty nice, never really got into Eisley before

Digging: Tiny Moving Parts - Breathe

Gmork89
September 18th 2017


7930 Comments


Hard to not enjoy this tbh, cheesy but undeniably catchy and smooth.

qwe3
September 18th 2017


21814 Comments


review is stupid childish vast and cosmic tbh

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
November 7th 2017


16651 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

It reads too focused on Sherry to the point of fanboyism but not childish or... "vast and cosmic"? lol wut??





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