Other musicians have rounded out its lineup from time to time, but Dashboard Confessional has always been the brainchild of Chris Carrabba, the most sensitive raven-haired rocker this side of Morrissey. Like Morrissey, Carrabba has built a career on heartbreak; unlike Morrissey, he's never had a band as cohesive as the Smiths to round out his songs, resulting in a discography that vacillates between acoustic albums and full-band affairs. 2009's Alter the Ending belongs to the latter camp, with Carrabba performing his pop anthems alongside a three-person backing band. Although the songs are as hook-laden as they've always been, fans of the singer's more intimate side may prefer the deluxe edition, which includes a bonus disc comprising acoustic versions of the entire track list.
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AllMusic Review by Andrew Leahey