Instant GratificationDance Gavin Dance Label: Rise Records Released: 04.14.15 Review by Matt Vogel | April 14, 2015 at 4:54 PM
Seasoned rockers Dance Gavin Dance are back with their sixth full-length record, Instant Gratification, and it certainly lives up to its title. Like a raw burst of color, thereâ€™s no doubt that this album brings a fresh perspective to the genre. A sugary pop influence coupled with Jon Messâ€™ severely unclean vocals and borderline psychedelic fretwork, itâ€™s clear that the band hasnâ€™t lost a single ounce of energy since their formation nearly a decade ago. If anything, theyâ€™ve only gotten even more lively over time, opening up to new musical styles to pave the way for a new medley of sounds for the genre.
The band couldnâ€™t have chosen a better opener than â€œWe Own The Night,â€ giving you a glimpse into the hurricane of buoyancy and zeal that the record exudes. Itâ€™s an addictive atmosphere that Dance Gavin Dance have crafted, striking just the right balance between chilling vocals and escalating instrumentals. Pearsonâ€™s singing seems to glide across the jagged, pumped up landscape that Mingus puts down through his drumming, but donâ€™t let that fool you â€” it goes from light and carefree to a headbanger in an instant, with â€œVariationâ€ and â€œShark Dadâ€ being prime examples.
More electronic elements and even rap (as heard in â€œEagle vs. Crowsâ€) are adopted as a part of the bandâ€™s sound, and itâ€™s surprisingly cohesive as a whole. But it doesnâ€™t become overwhelming at any point â€” or at least, no more overwhelming than guitarist Swanâ€™s seemingly frantic playing. Most notably, Pearsonâ€™s soaring vocals paired with Messâ€™ uncleans are more often than not the centerpiece of each song, keeping the instrumentals from becoming too heavy, and it feels like the two vocalists are delivering alternating doses of sweet lyrics that could make even the toughest of metalheads swoon, to punches of tenacity and reality that keep you grounded.
After all these years, there are a few skeptics out there thinking that Instant Gratification is simply a final soundtrack to a fading band. Dance Gavin Dance proves them incredibly wrong with their latest release, showing that theyâ€™re not only bringing â€œsomething newâ€ to the table by embracing different musical styles we havenâ€™t seen from the band before. Itâ€™s a record meant for the fans, for those that have stuck by the band throughout multiple lineup changes, and if that doesnâ€™t trigger a jolt of instant gratification, what will?
Buy It, Stream It, or Skip It? Buy it; you wonâ€™t be able to resist indulging in this album again and again.