Album: Destination EP
Label: Wooden Oxen
1. The Crown
2. Lay Down Your Arms
4. The Anchor
Dallas Taylor. One of the more revered names out of the class of “Recent Christian Heavy Music Frontmen.” Taylor fronted Underoath to a Solid State Records deal and one of the earliest Christian hardcore/new-wave emo records, The Changing Of Times, which paved the way for bands like Cry Of The Afflicted, Dead Poetic, and post-Dallas Taylor Underoath. After departing on somewhat uncertain terms, Taylor formed Southern rock band Maylene and the Sons of Disaster. While perhaps not as genre-shaping as The Changing Of Times, high-energy headbanger’s dreams II and the self-titled have provided many with hours of circle-pitting fun. So to borrow the old metaphor, if Underoath and Maylene had a child, it would sound absolutely dissimilar in every respect to Everett, Taylor’s newest project with Patrick Copeland. But while Everett may not give you your adrenaline fix, they do make some beautiful, intelligent, and even pop-sensible post-rock.
Destination kicks off with “The Crown,” a piano-driven brilliant opener that ebbs and swells with all the glory expected from a band in the genre. But unlike most post-rock groups, Everett seem to know what it takes to make instrumental music memorable, if not downright catchy. The album’s second track, “Lay Down Your Arms,” is its darkest and most ambitious. It opens to C-Minor guitars and pervasive snare rolls that carry on into the song. It builds multiple times, never reaching its peak, until about three minutes it breaks forth into more glorious strains than your favorite band ever wrote (unless your favorite band is either Mogwai or God is an Astronaut). The song can drag a bit with all the building, but repeated listens give a sense of urgency to the song that the climax bears out brilliantly.
“LaGuardia” is an entirely different affair. The song is entirely comprised of synths and drum machines. The synths fade from ear to ear on headphones, which I think is pretty cool here. “LaGuardia” is the chillest song I’ve heard since Hundred Year Storm’s “August On Fire,” and my favorite electronic track since Joy Electric’s “We are Rock” and “Disloyalist Party.” The EP closes with “The Anchor,” which — there is no other word for it — shimmers. It is hard not to lose yourself in this song. Listening to this song just might cause you to fall asleep in dreams of celestial experience. And that’s not at all as weird as it sounds.
Not counting an ill-fated stint in The New Tragic that may or may not have even happened, Everett is Dallas Taylor’s third try for music greatness. It seems that the third time may turn out to be the charm. Everett could use a few more distinguishing features from other bands of the genre, and for some with shorter attention spans, a little more dramatic building and possibly to become a little less drawn out. But the possible complaints pale in face of the magnificence of even the band’s debut 4-song EP. Growth could make Everett a real post-rock behemoth, much like Underoath is a paragon of modern-screamo. The legacy of The Changing Of Times may be one Taylor never matches, but in terms of sheer beauty, the Destination EP may be the greatest music he has made so far.
Notable Tracks: “The Crown,” “Lay Down Your Arms,” “LaGuardia”
Listen: “The Crown” and “LaGuardia” are up for streaming on myspace.