A Day in Black and White

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Notes Review

by Jason MacNeil

Having a track called "Tinnitus" as your opener could give some people the wrong impression, but A Day in Black and White aren't so much about noise for noise's sake but various sonic experiments for the opener, including some lo-fi guitar rumbles that have been tweaked and altered. The outro, "Sink Brand Cut Waist," is almost identical to the opener, making for a nice series of sonic bookends. The group tears into "New Energy" with a rampant energy that sounds like power punk in the vein of Sum 41 and Jimmy Eat World -- a guitar-heavy structure backed by some over-the-top drumming of Ian Thompson. A melodic alt-rock nugget, "A Literal Title" ensues with lead singer and main songwriter Daniel Morse simultaneously singing yet speaking the lyrics while the bridge goes into trippy '60s-era jamming in the vein of the Who. Yet Morse also sometimes mines the ground previously tread on during the grunge era, especially with the Nirvana characteristics quite apparent during "Lame Duck." The bare-bones rocker "Long-Distance Song Effects" is a head-bobbing nugget that makes enduring the one or two momentarily lulls worth the generally pleasing and airtight nugget. And the same can be said for "Nothing With Nothing," which ups the ante with a garage rock flair in the vein of the Von Bondies or the Hives. Another high-octane romp is "Ronald's Right," which ebbs and flows like an ordinary "emo" anthem prior to a dreary instrumental portion.

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