Review by Martin Stanyer
Release Date: October 30th 2015
‘Everything is easy’ or so the first track suggests opening up Dopamine by Third Eye Blind. A hypnotizing looping guitar riff kicks in, poppy yet refreshing. A chorus suggests this may be pleasant to listen to but lyrically, ‘now I’m just haunted by you constantly’ it’s dark. Lots of keys and electronic effects make this stand out in today’s guitar dominated rock scene.
There’s interesting piano sections that are used here and haunting strings. This album was taken care of in its creation. These are tales of tragedy and heartache but with positive aspects in the story telling which create songs that are stadium sized. The guitar is not the most notable of instruments on this record, it leaves enough room for all instruments to shine.
Track three ‘All the souls’ a nice acoustic sublime number that would fit in nicely to a rom-com soundtrack. Falsetto vocals cut through without sounding forced. The album is building and shaping into something unique and special. It’s very easy to relate to this album. I suppose broken relationships are always good to write about.
The album’s title track ‘Dopamine’ starts off like a drop in the ocean before launching itself into a very positive anthem. Catchy, and laden with hooks, your foot taps instantly. The piano breakdown is especially nice and, although you know where it will head, it’s still exciting. One of the nice things about this track is the production of the drums, not too tinny, they resonate but without being annoying or overproduced.
The standout of this album is track seven, ‘Something in you’, lush would be one way of describing it, addictive would be another. It’s infectious, it crawls under the skin like a tattoo and makes sure it leaves its mark. If you were wondering if you should part with your money to buy this album, it would be worth it for this track. Hauntingly beautiful. Certainly my favourite and I would place bets that it would strike a chord (literally) with 99% of people. A very simple but effective guitar solo really helps this song shine.
Not an album that I want to end, it feels like a best friend. I wish I had this album when I was younger, but it could be related to at any age. No it’s not angsty or heavy, it’s not trying to be offensive. Dopamine is melancholic, it’s haunting, and it’s clever and timeless. The musicians have really thought about this from how to combine certain sounds to the track listing (which really flows well). I find myself very fortunate and pleased to have had this listen. There are a lot of references lyrically to David Bowie, it gives the album an extra appeal to an older audience.
Closing track ‘Say it’ ‘if I tell you what I really want you’d say shut up’ sound familiar, Guys could so relate to this one, a song about trying to get your feelings across. Passionate, vocally supreme, there’s a desire to hurt the lover emotionally, until she starts talking over an intricate piano piece (nice touch). ‘Say what you mean’ – Couldn’t agree more with that statement, and as it ends on a very intense solo, that’s the end for this exceptional piece of art. The best advice I can offer is to go and buy this album, light a candle, drink a beer and absorb some great advice in the form of music.
Everything is Easy
All the Souls
Rites of passage
Back to Zero
Something in You
Get me Out of Here
All these things