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Evans Blue – “Evans Blue” (2009) June 19, 2009

Posted by rawkfistmusic in 2009, Evans Blue.
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Written by Andrew Hart

Losing a lead singer might as well be losing your head if you’re a band trying to make it in the rock music biz.  Just ask Fuel, who suddenly saw the spotlight shifted away from them unmistakably quick following the departure of frontman Brett Scallions.  Their album with new guy Toryn Green may have been a really good album, but it’s quite a feat to try and win back the legions of fans that leave with your old singer.  Evans Blue now faces the same dilemma, a good year following Kevin Matisyn’s ugly takeoff, the band tries to pick off where they left off with a one Dan Chandler.  The result, much like Fuel before them, is surprisingly delightful.

Evans Blue has tweaked their sound just a tad in the wake of 2007’s The Pursuit Begins When This Portrayal of Life Ends, opting to soak up the more typical sounds of modern rock, and coming out sounding a whole hell of a lot like Breaking Benjamin.  Vocalist Dan Chandler has a lot to do with this, taking away the unique but far from perfect Matisyn, and replacing him with a powerful hard rock voice.  Chandler commands songs in ways that Matisyn never could, and this is one big improvement noticeable on the new self-titled album from Evans Blue.  Tracks like “Buried Alive” and “The Future In The End” have some crazy hooks thanks to Chandler’s awesome use of his range.  “The Future In The End” may be the most vintage Evans Blue song as well, featuring an opening hook that sounds like it’s straight from the aforementioned ’07 release.

Of course with losing Matisyn, Evans Blue had to quickly come to grips with something everyone knew they’d be missing, and that’s the previous vocalist’s collection of intricate wordplay and lyrical mastery.  The Evans Blue of old was renowned for these lyrics unlike anything in modern rock, and sadly with the new guy in tow, the band has left behind this era.  Those who were swallowed up by Matisyn’s wordplay will find themselves deeply disappointed in tracks like “Sick Of It” which are about as generic as they come lyrically.  Most of the album is still better than expected in this category though, and those who had trouble coming to grips with Matisyn’s lyrics may find themselves pretty happy with the more easy-to-translate words.

Evans Blue’s biggest strength now though, no question, is Chandler’s ability to grip a song and run with it.  Nearly every track is pushed to it’s potential by his excellent pipes, very reminiscent of Breaking Benjamin’s Ben Burnley at times.  The whole band has moments where they sound like either Evans Blue of the first two albums, or Breaking Benjamin, and these are fantastic influences.  “Who We Are” for example, sounds very much instrumentally like Evans Blue.  It opens with the kind of unique instrumentation the band has whipped out previous, but Chandler pulls the song off and makes it sound like a Breaking Benjamin ballad.  In fact, just listen to the chorus and tell me he doesn’t sound just like Burnley.

These may be the biggest strengths and weaknesses of Evans Blue’s attempt to recover from this devastating blow.  They never sound entirely original, and many of the songs blend together the first few times you tackle the album.  However, all in all, it’s a good album if you repress all previous knowledge of the band and just take it as some kickass new music.  “Buried Alive” and “Can’t Go On” especially stand out as fantastic and infectious rock tracks that could do well on radio, or just on your iPod.  This is a good album from a band with something to prove, and prove it they did.  Evans Blue is going to be fine, and Dan Chandler is going to rock your world.

8 out of 10 – Download “Can’t Go On”

Evans Blue is | Dan Chandler – Vocals | Parker Lauzon – Guitar | Vlad Tanaskovic – Guitar | Joe Pitter – Bass | Davis Howard – Drums

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Comments»

1. K-God - June 19, 2009

I do love Breaking Benjamin, so maybe I’ll have to check these guys out. hmm

2. Robert - September 15, 2009

you obviously have no idea what this band used to be about. Chandler is the most generic fuck in the world, and every song on this album is generic as the last one. They need to change the name of this band, because this is not evans blue. Hmm. How about 3 Days Grace The Second. That sounds about right.

3. 2legit2quit - February 11, 2010

Why’d the old singer leave?

4. Scottie Brown - February 19, 2010

The band voted him out because he was making bad decisions for the band Lyrically and financially and business. They voted him out and got Chandler.

5. Fernanda - September 16, 2010

I agree completely with comment number two. I recently heard a song by evans blue and loved it. Turns out it was before they got the new singer. My boyfriend is like I love Erase My Scars its sooo good. I gave it a listen and was like what the fuck? This isn’t the enchanting voice I love >< and the lyrics, as said in the article, are "easier to follow" more like dumbed the fuck down. Its too damn generic. Switch on the radio and now they could sound like by other rock band out there.

6. Fernanda - September 16, 2010

I agree completely with comment number two. I recently heard a song by evans blue and loved it. Turns out it was before they got the new singer. My boyfriend is like I love Erase My Scars its sooo good. I gave it a listen and was like what the fuck? This isn’t the enchanting voice I love >< and the lyrics, as said in the article, are "easier to follow" more like dumbed the fuck down. Its too damn generic. Switch on the radio and now they could sound like any other rock band out there

7. Fernanda - September 16, 2010

Sorry for double posting lol

8. Brett - June 24, 2011

Parabelle is where evans blue old singer went to….check out the acoustic cd/dvd it’s awesome!! Them voting him ouit was dumb!! They should of went at it differently an allowed someone else to handle stuff idk…I think both parabelle an evans blue will get better it’ll just take time but I guess we will see!!


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