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Comments: Page 7
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12:29 PM on 07/08/13
Jason Tate
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I'd agree that The Greatest Generation is more diverse than Golden Record, but not by much.
I'd say by a lot: Soupy has more vocal range, the melodies are more dynamic, and the songs themselves end up being more diverse ... "Golden Record" borders on monotony at times ... in a way that the band hadn't in the past. The highs may be higher ... but the lows are definitely lower and more pronounced as they drone.

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I appreciate when bands can show off a lot of sonic range in their songwriting, and I feel like The Wonder Years made a move toward that for the first time with this latest release. The first half of The Greatest Generation is damn near spotless, and balances the soft and loud dynamics of the band perfectly. The second half loses steam, either with songs that didn't need to be on the record because they don't fit ("Madelyn") or with the kind of monotony they've struggled with in the past. I mean, you can call that album diverse all you want, but they still manage to have a reprise of just about every song on the record during the closer, and none of the interpolations sound unnatural or stretched.
But they change all those songs to fit in the closer ... they're not cut out of the original songs and placed in.

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Golden Record benefits from being shorter and leaner. And I can see how parts of it can blend together for you, but certainly not the whole album. "Catholic Girls" sounds nothing like "Knives," which sounds nothing like "Anchor." There's definitely a crescendo from point A to point B to point C, and I feel like it reaches its climax naturally. I'd actually argue that it's a more versatile album than War Paint was, something I think is ultimately to its detriment because the flow isn't as good.
But that's because "Knives" is the outlier in the album ... also arguably the best song ... due to this diversity (the two outlier songs are the best on the album -- the other being "Miles Apart"). "Catholic Girls" and "Anchor" sound like you could cut the gap between them and not realize you've changed songs. Where is the crescendo? Where is the climax?
12:30 PM on 07/08/13
Drew Beringer
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That song is basically unlistenable because my eyes roll so hard it hurts my head.

But that's another debate entirely, about a different topic, that I don't feel like having in this thread.

yeah that song is horrible

yup x 2
12:32 PM on 07/08/13
Archael
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it's been being hyped for awhile now. where have you been? haha
haven't been on this site as much as I used to. but I almost always notice the big bands getting hyped. not this time, though.
12:34 PM on 07/08/13
Greg
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haven't been on this site as much as I used to. but I almost always notice the big bands getting hyped. not this time, though.
it's been talked about on twitter and fbook by the band and such for many months now.
12:34 PM on 07/08/13
spezialk
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What bands do you consider this genre?

Pop-rock? There's some really good stuff out there right now, so I'd disagree.
Bands = any pop/rock/punk/alternative band covered on this site. Fair enough?

I agree there is some good stuff out there right now, however the good does not outweigh the mediocre and putrid. TDS' "worst" efforts are still better than most average genre/scene music currently; the only point I'm trying to make.
12:37 PM on 07/08/13
OurLadyCoolbean
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War Paint was my favorite album of 2011, so I'm incredibly excited that you think this tops it. That said, I am worried about monotony. War Paint was great in spite of the monotony, which was a testament to how strong all the songs were, but I'm not sure how long they can keep that up.

But still, incredibly excited.
12:39 PM on 07/08/13
Jason Tate
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Bands = any pop/rock/punk/alternative band covered on this site. Fair enough?

I agree there is some good stuff out there right now, however the good does not outweigh the mediocre and putrid. TDS' "worst" efforts are still better than most average genre/scene music currently; the only point I'm trying to make.
If that's the comparison, then you're dead wrong. Plenty of great bands covered on this site that are making fantastic op/rock/punk/alternative albums. Hell, "Golden Record" will be toward the end of my top 20 ... meaning there's at least 20 more bands I think released a better album.

TDS' worst songs are definitely as average as the run of the mill genre music. Not sure why you're judging them against the worst in the genre though.
12:40 PM on 07/08/13
Jake Jenkins
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the argument "its better than a lot of other stuff" is elementary
12:44 PM on 07/08/13
Jason Tate
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the argument "its better than a lot of other stuff" is elementary
This.

... it's like saying "This band vs the field" ... sure, even with some shitty "other stuff" ... the field still wins.
12:45 PM on 07/08/13
spezialk
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If that's the comparison, then you're dead wrong. Plenty of great bands covered on this site that are making fantastic op/rock/punk/alternative albums. Hell, "Golden Record" will be toward the end of my top 20 ... meaning there's at least 20 more bands I think released a better album.

TDS' worst songs are definitely as average as the run of the mill genre music. Not sure why you're judging them against the worst in the genre though.
I'm making the argument because Thomas' comment basically stated it's their "worst record" and quite average. Was that missed?
12:46 PM on 07/08/13
spezialk
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the argument "its better than a lot of other stuff" is elementary
Why? Because it's quite true.
12:47 PM on 07/08/13
Jason Tate
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I'm making the argument because Thomas' comment basically stated it's their "worst record" and quite average. Was that missed?
He's right.
12:47 PM on 07/08/13
Jake Jenkins
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Why? Because it's quite true.
because the record should be judged on its own merits other than simply looking whats around it and saying "well, its better than all of THIS stuff so its a good record." one could JUST as easily say "well, its not as good as all of THIS stuff, so its a bad record." its completely and utterly pointless to make such statements.
12:48 PM on 07/08/13
Jason Tate
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Why? Because it's quite true.
It's also worse than a lot of other stuff ... given that we're playing against the entire field of music.

Lots better. Lots worse. The definition of average.
01:38 PM on 07/08/13
Craig Manning
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I'd say by a lot: Soupy has more vocal range, the melodies are more dynamic, and the songs themselves end up being more diverse ... "Golden Record" borders on monotony at times ... in a way that the band hadn't in the past. The highs may be higher ... but the lows are definitely lower and more pronounced as they drone.

I'm pretty sure the vocal ranges are almost identical. Soupy sings a high B flat during the climax to "Screen Door," AJ has high B's all over "Drowning." Neither sings notes that are particularly low.

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But they change all those songs to fit in the closer ... they're not cut out of the original songs and placed in.

The changes are extremely minute. Some melodies get one or two notes changed, others just get slowed down, and others are quoted directly. It's actually quite artful how they do it, but the fact that the pieces fit together so well speaks to the inherent similarity that the songs shared in the first place. I'm not trying to tear that record down: it's currently in my top ten, and I could easily see myself liking it more than Golden Record come the end of the year. I just feel like you are being particularly hard on this band for doing something that so many other outfits in the pop-punk or pop-rock scenes do with every album. There's only so much you can do with four chords and a verse-chorus-bridge pop song structure, and I have always thought this band handled those constraints better than many from their scene.

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But that's because "Knives" is the outlier in the album ... also arguably the best song ... due to this diversity (the two outlier songs are the best on the album -- the other being "Miles Apart"). "Catholic Girls" and "Anchor" sound like you could cut the gap between them and not realize you've changed songs. Where is the crescendo? Where is the climax?

Haha, I actually think it's the weak point, but that's a different argument entirely. I don't think "Catholic Girls" and "Anchor" sound even remotely alike. And the climax is "Anchor," definitely. That song couldn't be anywhere but at the end of a record.

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