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Saves the Day - In Reverie

Hype. Hype. Hype. This album had it's fair share to say the least. Aside from being the first major label release, and the fourth album from emo demi-gods Saves the Day, by the time 'In Reverie' hit the shelves loyal STD were starved for new material. Nearly nine months before the release date, Singer/Songwriter/Guitarist Chris Conley was rumored to be anointing the tracks in progress as the baby of the bands first album 'Cant Slow Down' and their previous release 'Stay What You Are.' The idea of a 'Hot Time At Your Funeral In Delaware' or 'Freakish Houses and Billboards' had STD fans craving a taste of the new songs. Crappy live mp3's of the test show in L.A. popped up on the web just long enough for some of us to grab them before the major label types had every recording of the songs stricken from history. These songs resembled 'In My Waking Life,' 'Morning in the Moonlight' 'In Reverie' and the track formerly known as 'Cactus Stomp Moonbeam'(what later became 'anywhere with you') Despite their poor sound-quality, the songs were bouncy, energetic, and delightful.

By the time the single, 'Anywhere with You' was released, the collective anticipation had reached its peak. All around the emo world kiddies booted up their 56k's to get their first taste of the fruits of STD's studio labors. Lets just say it was a bit of a let down. Gone was the passion from Conley's voice, missing was the lyrical depth that had vaulted STD into emo stardom, and any resemblance of either 'Cant Slow Down' or 'Stay What You Are' was nowhere to be found. Hell, 'Anywhere With You' is more reminiscent of disco than it was of anything STD had put out before. Had Saves the Day slipped into the vomit of a cheap imitation of Weezer on cocaine?

A few weeks after the single hit, the rest of the album began to leak in bits and pieces. Fans tuned in to see if the rest of 'In Reverie' was similar to the single. They heard the soothing ballad 'Wednesday the Third.' They heard the poppy goodness of 'Driving in the Dark' and 'Tomorrows Too Late.' They began to exhale. They began to smile when they recognized 'In My Waking Life' from the test show and the genetically engineered 'Monkey.' (a song written for 'Stay What You Are' that was no secret to hardcore STD fans) Newbie Pete Parada added to an improved drum sound, and the guitar work and melodies better suited the songs than the 'beat boppin' guitars of SWYA. Conley shows heavy influences of the Beatles, David Bowie, and other old time rock. His songs are neat and pretty, and no longer rely on runaway emotion to carry the tunes from intro to chorus and back to verse. He hasn't lost his affection for describing eyes and skies. That being said, 'In Reverie' is still missing STD's trademark kick. I have pinpoited the defecit to the vocals. Though Conley vocals show more life once you skip past the first single, he still undersings a lot of the record. A prime example is 'Morning in the Moonlight.' The the drums/strings are kicking in full force but Conley voice is life as he laments 'Im all out of time, watching the swaying tide.' Top Tracks - 'Monkey,' 'Tomorrow's Too Late'