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Days Away - Mapping An Invisible World (Cover Artwork)

Days Away

Days Away: Mapping An Invisible WorldMapping An Invisible World (2005)
Fueled By Ramen Records

Reviewer Rating: 3


Contributed by: InaGreendaseBrian
(others by this writer | submit your own)

I used to loathe Days Away. For years I passed the band off as a horribly bland take on Stay What You Are-ish Saves The Day, especially after seeing them open for Finch in 2003. Cut to the next time I saw Finch, late last year, and apparently the band had grown leaps and bounds, now opting for much .
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I used to loathe Days Away. For years I passed the band off as a horribly bland take on Stay What You Are-ish Saves The Day, especially after seeing them open for Finch in 2003. Cut to the next time I saw Finch, late last year, and apparently the band had grown leaps and bounds, now opting for much more atmospheric arrangements and root-reaching influences.

The band's former label, Lava, completely dropped the ball with Mapping An Invisible World. The band's debut full-length finds Days Away injecting ambience and lush arrangements into their delicate emo pop, a majority of which seems to fit in line with their present-day contemporaries, sort of like a complex, lyrically competent, more-former-than-latter passive aggressive early Armor For Sleep in that sense. However, unlike those bands and more, DA take a *light* influence from more revered, 90's traditionalists like the often-extended instrumental atmospheres of Sunny Day Real Estate and the drifting, world-weary haze pop of Wood/Water-era Promise Ring. Bridging the gap between the eras is what makes Days Away stand out above the glut of bands they often play with and/or are compared to (which even myself am guilty of).

Though his talents are far better witnessed in a live setting, drummer Tim Arnold definitely has his moments on the disc here, whether it's riding hi-hat or the seemingly programmed feats pulled off in the bridge of "Mirrors" and "God And Mars" as well as "T. Kline's Decline." His technique seems to draw primarily from jam bands and secondarily from prog, and it's a hybrid that somehow works wonders for his band's general style of which is a polar opposite.

Standout tracks include the only real cynical-sounding track of the bunch, "Mirrors," as well as the musically upbeat and pessimistically reflective ball of irony that is "Ideas." Creating an opening track for such an easy-going sound has to be a feat in itself, and Days Away pull it off with "God And Mars," a comparatively bold number with Keith Goodwin's vocals at the forefront and swiftly executed changes to rich dynamics in the chorus. Even amongst the complex arrangements, these tracks and others sustain an overwhelming catchiness to them that's at times rather compelling.

Days Away have crafted a fairly original and pretty enjoyable mix of atmospheric pop-rock with Mapping An Invisible World. While its second half could certainly benefit from vividly more interesting moments, the record is a pleasant substitute for the otherwise horrendously derivative, mind-numbing antics of most of their peers.

MP3
God And Mars
STREAM
Gravity
Ideas

 

 
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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
LookingBack (May 6, 2007)

I saw this band with Armor for Sleep and The Snake the Cross the Crown.

Surprisingly, I really enjoy them, and I really enjoy this cd.

darkstarm (January 15, 2006)

Heard this band last night for the first time. The opening track is gorgeous, the other stuff blends a little bit, but all in all it's a very solid track and the singer and drummer are fantastic. Spot on with the Wood/Water comparisons too, cause that was exactly what I was thinking when I heard it. 3/5 is a fine score for this record.

Furthermore: The scoring system here at the 'org is definitely something you have to figure out for yourself. Think of how few bands will get half a star, and how even fewer will get 10. 3/5 does not mean "60%" in the sense that Pitchfork would give it (IMO) but that 2.5/5 means average and 3/5 means slightly above average. Which is what this band is. Might deserve a 3.5/5 but jesus it's half a fucking star.

Angel-Jin (September 22, 2005)

I'm sorry, but I absolutely love this band, and I love their CD's.

Anonymous (June 28, 2005)

This band is headed to the top. Great lyrics and a great arrangement. Neal avron [yellow card,wallflowers] loves days away
and proves it with a wonderful production. Get this cd and enjoy a very talented band.

Anonymous (June 3, 2005)

This could wind up being the most underrated album of the year just because of the lack of a big label to push it into stores--but it has found its way into my CD player and it will be there for a long time. Great album!

Anonymous (May 24, 2005)

some of you guys are so funny with your "high and mighty" look at this group and their music......i always thinks its interesting how people review music like this with a "holier than thou" stance as if they know and really "understand" all music....just because they know a few indie bands.....good music is good music...whether its rap....rock....whatever .....this is obviously good music....if you cant sit back and chill to this music your lost

Anonymous (May 16, 2005)

my allergies are at a 10 , if 0 being no allergies , and 10 being 'allergies that drive you to insanity' and i can't type clearly because these fucking allergies.

paul

Anonymous (May 12, 2005)

0 > Days Away

Anonymous (May 12, 2005)

You PLUS your life = ZERO!

Anonymous (May 12, 2005)

"A local band for us that I've followed since they played at move-up day in Middle School."

Which was last week.

Anonymous (May 12, 2005)

Wow...what a comeback! And anyone reading this can
see you are ducking my question. You know why?
Because you don't have a clue. My "ego" is wrapped up in being a fan for a band I love. A local band for us that I've followed since they played at move-up day in Middle School.
And through their whole creative process from the kind of "emo" band Brian said he couldn't stand right up to now, into a great band that transcends easy, meaningless labels from people who haven't even listened to the CD in question. All the touring, the van breakdowns, the horrible venues with low pay, etc. You were never that devoted to anything, right? And it eats you up inside. Well, I'll be damned if I'm going to let a no-nothing punk like you take easy shots at them. Give your opinion, fine. But get personal and you'll get it back tenfold. Someone else mentioned the CD release show the other night. Well, if you had been there you would have seen a huge hometown following giving Days Away the sendoff they deserve. Their fans, like me, are a family, and we love this band. I don't expect you to understand that. So I know why I want them to succeed. And so why are YOU here? Because your ego is wrapped up in destruction. Ahh, your feelings are hurt, aren't they? Good. And now, like a child, you feel like you have to get the last word in. Right? Okay, I think I've sifted through your shit enough for anyone to see there's nothing there but shit. And here's my response in advance for any other lame comment you make. You PLUS your life = ZERO.
PS--To anyone else, this is a GREAT album, buy it and support a hardworking bunch of talented artists!

Anonymous (May 12, 2005)

No, YOU are generic.

Anonymous (May 11, 2005)

Real intelligent response. The "blah blah" refers to your life, huh? The band is out on their CD tour building a larger fan base and look what you're doing with YOUR time. I'm a fan, so I don't mind doing what I can to help them make it. You? You're pathetic. And you throw the word "generic" around like you really know what it means. Well, one meaning of it is "without individual character or distinctive haracteristics." You know what THAT means? It means YOU are generic. And you didn't answer the question: Why do you sneak into websites and snipe at a band you don't like and ridicule their fans? You want to eradicate the whole "emo plague" all by yourself? Instead of crapping on music you hate why don't you go MAKE the music you like yourself? Can't do it, eh? You PLUS your life = ZERO.

Anonymous (May 11, 2005)

Blah, blah, blah "that's real envy at the level of hatred you're spewing for guys who can do what you can't" blah, blah, blah.

I'm confused, whose ego is tied up in a generic emo band? And what's so "tough" about pointing out that it's generic?

Anonymous (May 11, 2005)

You have to wonder what kind of lowlife visits websites just to pick apart bands he doesn't like? What kind of cretin must also ridicule their fans? Fans who are just trying to support musical artists who are struggling to make it in a tough business. Failed musician? What happened tough guy? You tried to learn the guitar but that whole having to form callouses on your fingers thing was just too painful? Whatever, that's real envy at the level of hatred you're spewing for guys who can do what you can't--while you can only watch and stew in your own loser juices. Here's a math lesson for you: You your life = Zero. No matter how you add it up.

Anonymous (May 11, 2005)

...at least they arent hardcore...

Anonymous (May 11, 2005)

Another math lesson:

Equations are just expressions. They can be made up of letters, symbols, numbers or anything else. Of course, someone who's really digging Days Away can't be expected to have finished sixth grade, so I can understand why you'd be confused.

Anonymous (May 11, 2005)

A math lesson:

Delicate = Doing what other bands have already done, but with a string section
Emo = The sound that sells
Pop = Bland and generic

That's math? I can't find any numbers in there. 2 2=?

Anonymous (May 11, 2005)

I saw Days Away at their record release show last night at Tower Records and they were amazing. And so is this album!

kenjamin (May 11, 2005)

It's okay Brian, some people are asses. A 6 out of 10 means above average on a review scale. And furthermore, I was always pretty stoked to get a D and pass in school.

inagreendase (May 11, 2005)

I agree that "review scoring systems have nothing to do with academic scoring systems"--but my point was that most people use their basic math background to INTERPRET numerical scores of ANY kind. Especially if they don't have time to read the actual review itself--and I'll bet that happens more than you'd like to think. And I also think most people can easily convert the fraction 3/5 into 60%. And 60% = SUCKS!

Why would you say you agree that the scoring systems have nothing to do with each other, and then proceed to say 60% sucks, when it is, in fact, an above-average number on a scale of 1-100?

Anonymous (May 11, 2005)

"Days Away have crafted a fairly original and pretty enjoyable mix" - I'd have said that translated as "it's alright but no more than that", which would merit 3/5, surely?

Anonymous (May 11, 2005)

Brian, your rebuttal of my analogy misses the point. I agree that "review scoring systems have nothing to do with academic scoring systems"--but my point was that most people use their basic math background to INTERPRET numerical scores of ANY kind. Especially if they don't have time to read the actual review itself--and I'll bet that happens more than you'd like to think. And I also think most people can easily convert the fraction 3/5 into 60%. And 60% = SUCKS! Why spend all those words telling us you think the CD is "good" and then cheapen it with a crass 3/5 that for most people does not translate into a good score or "grade"? I know, it's tough to admit you might be wrong, and worlds would collide if any critic ever changed his or her mind--so you must try to discredit any negative "feedback." PS--Because YOU authoritatively say "It's natural to become defensive" doesn't automatically make it so--and it really smacks of, well, being defensive! So I hereby give your rebuttal to my note a 2/5, which = 40% which = REALLY SUCKS! Now how about we give this space back to your readers so they can comment on a great CD. Okay?

inagreendase (May 11, 2005)

Review scoring systems have nothing to do with academic scoring systems. It's pointless to compare the two when the latter is based on how much knowledge of a subject you've acquired and the former just an answer to a simple "is it good or bad?" query.

Also, it's natural to become defensive if you state your "independent thoughts" as attacks.

swingline (May 11, 2005)

you make a good point. there's only one system for grading so let's get with it.

Anonymous (May 11, 2005)

1) Oh Brian, you weren't being quoted, it was an independent comment (it's not all about you, dude, really!), 2) The wise-ass comment wasn't meant for you either, try reading the other comments (why are you being so defensive, it really ISN'T all about you!), 3) Oh, and back to the math thing and the 3/5. Remember when you were in elementary school and you learned that 3/5 = 60% and 60% = a D or barely passing? In my opinion your review reflected a 4 or a B, but your 3/5 says otherwise. Just asking for consistency, OK?

inagreendase (May 10, 2005)

(1)There isn't a song on this album you'll skip over! (2)Envious, no-talent wise-asses should find something else to do than rip bands who create art to make a living!

(1) I never said that. (2) I wouldn't say a 3/5 is "ripping" on a band.

Anonymous (May 10, 2005)

1. lava didn't drop the ball, they did exactly what island did with fall out boy and had them release an album on fueled by ramen to gain more of an indie fanbase before whoring them to the mtv crowd. i hate the idea of this tactic, but it is smart.

2. this album is absolutely beautiful

3. however, i hate how nobody ever mentions the fact that only 4 of these tracks are new and therefore this full-length is a sham. 2 eps stuck together, only one of them new.

4. fuck fall out boy

swingline (May 10, 2005)

you only think that way because you're in the band.

Anonymous (May 10, 2005)

brilliant and beautiful.

Anonymous (May 10, 2005)

The reviewer contradicts his praise with a puny three stars. There isn't a song on this album you'll skip over! Envious, no-talent wise-asses should find something else to do than rip bands who create art to make a living! Here's another "math lesson" for you: FIVE STARS = a great CD!!!

Anonymous (May 10, 2005)

amazing album. go buy it.

Sally_Field (May 10, 2005)

You went to see Finch? What are you a 14 year old fat emo girl. loser

WHOA. Harsh!

Anonymous (May 10, 2005)

the comment below me almost made me spit coke all over my computer. don't do that to me i'm at work for gods sake

paul

Anonymous (May 10, 2005)

You went to see Finch? What are you a 14 year old fat emo girl. loser.

inagreendase (May 10, 2005)

Did you mean to refer to Days Away in the above, but mistakenly wrote Finch?

Nope, DA toured with Finch in both 2003 and 2004.

Anonymous (May 10, 2005)

A math lesson:

Delicate = Doing what other bands have already done, but with a string section
Emo = The sound that sells
Pop = Bland and generic

Therefore:

"delicate emo pop" = rehashed trendy crap

Anonymous (May 10, 2005)

I saw these guys on a Something Corporate, Mae, RX Bandits, etc tour a while back. they were ok.

Cut to the next time I saw Finch, late last year, and apparently the band had grown leaps and bounds, now opting for much more atmospheric arrangements and root-reaching influences.

Did you mean to refer to Days Away in the above, but mistakenly wrote Finch?

theundergroundscene (May 10, 2005)

ew

i guess i only hate them because i'm from jersey

and they shoved down everyone's throats like WOW BEST BAND EVER

TheMarc (May 10, 2005)

Not bad at all.

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