Dashboard Confessional - Alter The Ending

Album cover
Acoustic, Rock
Vagrant Records
Dashboard Confessional
Alter The Ending
Dashboard Confessional - Alter The Ending Review rating:
4
User rating:
Average: 4 (1 vote)

Face it—your favorite Dashboard Confessional songs are juvenile. It was 2001, so it was cool to be juvenile, cool to be whiney, and emo hadn’t become a curse word yet. And you were singing along at the top of your lungs to: “but as for me I wish that I was anywhere with anyone making out” because you were juvenile too. Not to discount anything Chris did back on “The Places…;” quite the opposite really. Everything was beautifully immature and the emotion was real. If you have been waiting, year after year, for that same Chris Carabba with a solo acoustic guitar, then Alter The Ending certainly isn’t for you.

Chris has refined his songwriting skills, experimented with pop songs and harmonization, and in the end created hooks that you and your kid sister can sing along to. Save for a few songs on the latter half of the record, Dashboard favors the electric guitar and even throws some abrasive licks in the high register onto the album, especially in the opening bars of the first track “Get Me Right.”

He still sings about love, to be expected, but the lyrical content has become much more poetic and substantial. Sure-to-be-favorite fifth track “I Know About You” blows by in little over 3 minutes (which is actually par for the album, only 1 song over 4 minutes) and Chris masterfully couples a strong hook with catchy pre-choruses and wandering guitar progressions.

In fact, the album is a step back towards The Places You Have Come To Fear The Most in a way that separates from Dusk and Summer. The album feels much more complete than his previous effort, and there is more than one single on this album. There is such a wide array of radio-worthy songs that there is not a clear single on the record. Though, that compromises the complexity and diversity on the record; every song is basically verse-chorus-bridge. It would have been interesting to see Chris use his strong songwriting skills he shows on this album and apply it to a more varied, more dangerous song just once on this release.

Although it’s been nearly ten years since the album that established Dashboard Confessional as the forefathers of their genre, Chris Carabba hasn’t written better songs until Alter The Ending. The album goes to prove that with age and experience comes the ability to just write great songs.

1. Get Me Right
2. Until Morning
3. Everybody Learns From Disaster
4. Belle Of The Boulevard
5. I Know About You
6. Alter The Ending
7. Blame It On The Changes
8. Even Now
9. The Motions
10. No News Is Bad News
11. Water And Bridges
12. Hell On The Throat

Dashboard Confessional was started in 2000, by Chris Carrabba in Boca Raton, Florida, as a side project from his band Further Seems Forever.

Chris recorded his first album, The Swiss Army Romance, in 2000. The following year, he recorded Further Seems Forever's debut album The Moon Is Down. However, he left the band soon after the album's release, instead recording and releasing his sophomore album The Places You Have Come to Fear the Most, as well as a follow-up EP titled So Impossible.

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