It’s summer, music fans. That means it is time to shed your cares and worries about work, financial security and adult interpersonal relationships, and take yourself to a simpler time, when emo was king and everyone looked better in Vans and plain black T-shirts.
Misser’s Every Day I Tell Myself I’m Going To Be a Better Person is a transporting album, capturing a sound that certainly hasn’t faded — emo and pop-punk are still thriving genres — but has perhaps lost a little bit of cultural market share to indie-folk sensibilities. Comprised of Tim Landers of Transit and Brad Wiseman of This Time Next Year, Misser has their stylistic pedigree locked down. And for fans of groups like Taking Back Sunday, Every Day feels like an old friend already.
With the album’s title being what it is, one would expect some good, old fashioned self-examination with a tablespoon of angst. “Time Capsules” hits all of the right notes. A great guitar intro leads into lines like “Just bury me in a box in your backyard,” cementing this confessional of repeated mistakes and living in the past into the “Thing Everyone Can Relate To” file. Because, as this song is keen to remind you, we all suck. (But in a good way.)
The theme of the album is best represented on “Time Capsules,” but it certainly is recurrent throughout. “Bridges” is a monument of small town angst, with a heart-pounding epic feel and bushels of emotional turmoil to go around. Who hasn’t thought “I’ll find new people to hate, new faces to forget”? (Disclaimer: You will only have thought that before if you liked The Catcher in the Rye.)
It’s nice when an album is so obvious about what its top track is meant to be, and here it’s “I’m Really Starting To Hope The World Ends In 2012,” a song title Fall Out Boy would have used if they hadn’t broken up (or started to be the Britta Perry of bands). If you’ve heard Jay-Z’s “D.O.A.,” know that, lyrically, this track is the emo version of that pièce de résistance. It’s a great little treatise on why modern popular culture has become, well, the Fall Out Boy of anthropological concepts. The latter third of the song delves into what seems like a neat little crescendo, but ultimately cools down for an ending reminiscent of the quieter moments on Relient K’s self-titled debut.
A couple of tracks serve admirably as genre capstones: “Weightless” gets the blink-182 vibe down in the vocal department (Tom and Mark, is that you?), with a propellant pop-punk patter, and “Bad News” could easily be a Man Overboard song, right down to the boy-meets-girl-in-the-burbs narrative. “Sanity” is a nice enough acoustic track, while “The Waits” flirts with hardcore and some vigorous scream-singing.
Summer is a time to build personal legends: The nights! The carelessness! The activities, oh, the activities! As proven by science, a good emo album is the perfect backdrop for such endeavors. Every Day I Tell Myself I’m Going to Be a Better Person can be that backdrop this summer, if only you’ll let it.
(2) “Time Capsules”
(6) “I’m Really Starting To Hope The World Ends In 2012”