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Forgive Durden - Wonderland (Cover Artwork)

Forgive Durden

Forgive Durden: WonderlandWonderland (2006)
Fueled By Ramen Records

Reviewer Rating: 3.5
User Rating:


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

I guess it's sort of a given that when one of your favorite bands is so directly ripped off the first time, you're really not going to mind all that much. I certainly don't mind it with the various number of post-Kid Dynamite bands (being the best example of this), and I'm not going to complain (yet.
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I guess it's sort of a given that when one of your favorite bands is so directly ripped off the first time, you're really not going to mind all that much. I certainly don't mind it with the various number of post-Kid Dynamite bands (being the best example of this), and I'm not going to complain (yet) with the sudden influence Seattle, WA's Gatsbys American Dream is beginning to claim a throne to in that particular scene.

I'm referring to the same city's Forgive Durden, who ambitiously writes a concept album for their debut, Wonderland, apparently about the travails of a young man going through the life cycles of finding love and capitalist greed enslavement and the like. Despite that subject matter, which gets fairly dark at times (I mean shit, a CEO does get capped at one point), the album is extremely upbeat emo/pop-punk with all of Gatsbys' tendencies: poppy but strong, sultry vocals, creative guitar base, and a slew of time changes.

FD provide a little bit of separation with their diverse instrumentation, however. Whether it be the horn section of "Ear to Ear" or mandolin of "Parable of the Sower," the band serves up bits of ear candy that add a necessary distinct flavor to their tunes. "Il Tango Della Signora Francesco Di Bartolommeo Di Zanobi Del Giocondo" even closes with some lively tribal drum beats.

While much of Wonderland feels a bit restrained, the standout is opener "Ants;" it's the most charged, energetic offering, feeling flat out aggressive in comparison to the rest of the album. It also solidly sets the mood to come. The keyboards and general guitars of "The Great Affair Is to Move" give it a heavy vibe akin to Boys Night Out's Trainwreck, while the opening chords and hushed singing of "I've Got a Witch Mad at Me and You Might Get Into Trouble" remind an awful lot of Brand New's "The Quiet Things No One Ever Knows."

Also, Casey Bates produced the album. You may know him for Gatsbys' Volcano, as well as fellow GAD followers This Providence; he applies the same type of crisp sound here, which further engrosses the similarities.

While it definitely isn't all that original, Fueled by Ramen has put out their best release in years with Forgive Durden's Wonderland. The band's sound may be one very obviously rooted in modern influences, but they're drawing from some of the best for their already top-notch, bold songwriting, so once all's smoothed out they're sure to deliver a spectacular mark upon the scene as opposed to a merely efficient one.

STREAM
Beware the Jubjub Bird And Shun the Frumious Bandersnatch
Il Tango Della Signora Francesco Di Bartolommeo Di Zanobi Del Giocondo

The Great Affair Is to Move
For a Dreamer, Night's the Only Time of Day

 

 
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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.
rockguy2007 (March 13, 2007)

nice!

Anonymous (June 1, 2006)

Okay, I love this shit, I don't care how much it's influenced by Gatsby's A. D., it's too lovely to worry much about

Anonymous (May 30, 2006)

I love gatsby's mostly for their amazing guitar and I definitely see the similarities in this band, but I think what I've heard of this record is actually far more accessible than gatsby's and for that, I like it. I think the second guitar here really shows and is a good addition to the formula and there are actually some quite climactic moments

Anonymous (May 29, 2006)

Great review.

I'm with Brian. I really like GAD, and I don't necessarily mind the obvious imitation on this album. However, I'm still debating about whether or not to get it.

New GAD in August, though. Is that right?

retistictumblweed (May 29, 2006)

"In fact, every Casey Bates band sounds like every other Casey Bates band."

Is this guy the new Ryan Greene or something? What happened to the old Ryan Greene?

Anonymous (May 27, 2006)

this does sound a lot, A LOT like gatsbys... but its good cause it'll hold me over til gatsby's new album comes out.

awful, awful name though. that's the onyl reason why i clicked on the review.

Anonymous (May 27, 2006)

fueled by ramen...what a shitty label..haha

rkl (May 27, 2006)

Fueled by Ramen has put out their best release in years ...
not like theres a lot of competition for that one.

steveman (May 26, 2006)

I dunno, I get more of a Panic At The Disco! wannabe vibe from them than Gatsby. Strangly I hate both of those bands, but I like these guys.

Anonymous (May 26, 2006)

Don't know if anybody notices that EVERY band that works with Casey Bates starts to sound like GAD. In fact, every Casey Bates band sounds like every other Casey Bates band. New This Providence sounds like Gatsbys, a track on this FD release sounds like Daphne Loves Derby, and so on and so forth until the end of time.

I've had a long running theory about this, that Casey Bates actually writes all the music for the bands he produces and does it at such a furious clip that he can knock out album after album with zero time in between. A true genius.

Anonymous (May 26, 2006)

i cant get over this band's horrible name

almostpunkenough (May 26, 2006)

i'm with tyler, this shit borrows itself into your brain. pretty damn good musicianship as well.

Anonymous (May 26, 2006)

Yep, toight little band this one, not too Gatsbyish, but unoriginal nonethelss. Still, as i said, they're tight, and I like them a lot. I dont agree with them been Ramen's best release in years, Academy Is was better methinks, even that new fall out boy, and i know i'll take flak for that, but i dont care. Still, a good band, buy this album and listen good, these boys have big things in their future...

Anonymous (May 26, 2006)

Sounds promising, the name a fight club reference or what?

DarrenMcLeod (May 26, 2006)

these guys scream "We want to be Gatsbys American Dream!" to me, and I can't get past it. I love GAD, but these guys just don't cut it.

tylerdurden8136 (May 26, 2006)

for some reason or another, this album has grown on me more and more every time i listen to it. i can honestly say this will be somewhere in my top 10 by the end of the year.

i don't know, there's just something about it.

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