A Mark, a Mission, a Brand, a Scar (Vagrant)

Dashboard Confessional 

A Mark, a Mission, a Brand, a Scar (Vagrant)

Welcome to the world of Chris Carrabba, where kisses are nuclear-powered, tattoos cannot cover enough forearm space and no album title is too pretentious. It's easy to forget that Carrabba is a musician -- the lock-jawed crooner's dewy looks, alterna-Gap fashion sense and adoring teenage fan club make him easy critical prey before he utters a single note. But the little girls understand his grand tales of woe-mance, and a little Dippity-Do never hurt anyone's chances on the pop charts now, did it?

On his third full-length studio effort, the emo superstar goes electric. Dylan at Newport it ain't. Mark begins with a sprightly take on "Hands Down," which was issued in sparser form on 2001's So Impossible EP. The opener startles, as it was calculated to do -- one is used to downtrodden acoustic fare from Carrabba, so it's refreshing to hear him sound energized. Only after a few spins do you realize you're listening to a Sum-41 album.

Songs such as "Rapid Hope Loss" and "I Am Missing" feature the same ham-fisted choruses, paint-by-numbers angst and faux British accents that can be found on any number of late-'90s pop-punk monstrosities. When Carrabba reverts to his popular routines -- delicate, acoustic tone poems about really mean girls -- he comes across so wimpy he makes Morrissey sound like Zakk Wylde. On Carrabba's early material, one could muster sympathy for the lovesick singer; Mark makes you root for whichever tawny supermodel rattled his cage.

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Latest in Hear & Now

Facebook Activity

All contents ©2014 Kansas City Pitch LLC
All rights reserved. No part of this service may be reproduced in any form without the express written permission of Kansas City Pitch LLC,
except that an individual may download and/or forward articles via email to a reasonable number of recipients for personal, non-commercial purposes.

All contents © 2012 SouthComm, Inc. 210 12th Ave S. Ste. 100, Nashville, TN 37203. (615) 244-7989.
All rights reserved. No part of this service may be reproduced in any form without the express written permission of SouthComm, Inc.
except that an individual may download and/or forward articles via email to a reasonable number of recipients for personal, non-commercial purposes.
Website powered by Foundation