All Your Favorite Bands

All Your Favorite Bands

-Music Review by Kayla Pongrac

Dawes’s latest album, All Your Favorite Bands, offers listeners nine well-crafted songs perfect for road trip sing-alongs. As with previous albums, Dawes charms listeners through well-crafted instrumentation and poignant lyrics. Likewise, Lead singer Taylor Goldsmith’s voice suits his band’s sentimental songs perfectly, realizing an ever-present theme of sentimentality that makes All Your Favorite Bands worth listening to repeatedly.

The band’s principal strength lies in their songwriting. Reflective lyrics suggest relatable characters, scenes, and emotions. The strong writing blends masterfully with Dawes’s well-established folk/rock sound. Since the release of 2009’s North Hills, Dawes has continually given their fanbase something to talk about—and countless lyrics to appreciate. With that in mind, All Your Favorite Bands does not disappoint.

The album’s first track immediately pulls readers in by their shirt collars, if you will. “Things Happen”  infers that there’s a certain beauty about a sense of inevitability. The chorus—“Let’s make a list of all the things the world has put you through / Let’s raise a glass to all the people you’re not speaking to / I don’t know what else you wanted me to say to you / Things happen / That’s all they ever do”—compels listeners to think about a person they either know or knew, who refuses to accept the fact that sometimes events  occur out of their control. “Woe is me” types will share in the refrain.

Similarly, the chorus in the title track reveals the bands lyrical prowess: “I hope that life without a chaperone is what you thought it’d be / I hope your brother’s El Camino runs forever / I hope the world sees the same person that you always were to me / And may all your favorite bands stay together.” This is exactly the kind of song that high school seniors sing at the top of their lungs during prom. Bonus: this song has appealed to even younger audiences; check out the official music video for the song and you’ll find Goldsmith playing acoustic guitar while the McKinley Elementary School children’s choir accompanies him on the final chorus. What a smile-inducing 35 seconds!

The eighth track, “Right on Time,” again offers stirring lyrical intrigue: “If these walls could talk / I’d defer to the furniture / The piano, the table, the bed that we both sleep in / These constant, silent messengers.” If Goldsmith weren’t a musician, lyrics like these suggest he would be a successful novelist.

All Your Favorite Bands is a solid effort that should satisfy current Dawes fans as well as interest newcomers. Like the wish expressed in the title track, one can only hope that Dawes does right by fans (young and old) and stays together.


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