Listen Up: Wednesday, March 02, 2005
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A D V E R T I S E M E N T
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
This Day & Age

... always leave the ground (One Eleven Records)

By Billy Walters

Honest to God, thereís a computer program that record companies are using to predict if a song will be a commercial hit. Itís called Hit Song Science, and, yes, it can indeed provide proof that evil is alive and well, thank you very much. The software compares ó note by note ó a new tune against various hits (a.k.a. moneymakers) from the past 50 years. If the song bears some of the same qualities of past successes, well, Mr. Record Executive considers it TRL worthy. As if writing, recording, and keeping a band together arenít hard enough, now aspiring rock stars have to consider statistical probabilities.

This is all a roundabout way of saying that Hit Song Science probably had a robotic hand in the construction of ... always leave the ground, This Day & Ageís second full-length. Lead vocalist Jeff Martinís voice is so honey-sweet and pretty, it could easily front a boy band instead of the melodic, emotionally charged rock outfit that This Day & Age is. And with the voice comes the hooks. Miles and miles of hooks. The majority of the songs on the disc are major-chord free-for-alls that encourage head-bobbing and humming along. And why wouldnít you? With all the jangly guitars and whip-shot drumming, these ditties have power-pop groove and motion.

... always leave the ground seems made for modern radio: non-offensive crunch from the amps, catchy melodies, and inane lyrics, like the kind the kids dig. Hell, the c.d.ís even got a weeper about homecoming. Donít all those high school numbers end up in heavy rotation? Give the majors time to consult their new computer friend, and weíll see.


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