Monday, May 14, 2012

Day Creep - Death Bell Chimes [Snow Clone]

In case you don't know, Day Creep is Aaron Troyer out of Columbus, OH who also plays in Outer Spacist with fellow Columbus punks Night of Pleasure. When Troyer feels like day creepin', and isn't fronting his band Day Creeper, he heads down to his basement and morphs into Day Creep, Incredible Hulk-style. I don't have tons of knowledge about the project but my understanding is Troyer writes and records everything himself, plays all the instruments etc. This is noteworthy because the tape does not sound like a "bedroom" project. It actually sounds like a real-life rock band. Props.
Death Bell Chimes is a crisp set of pop tunes. Getting the blood pumping right off the bat, the guitars on "Dive into the Ground" are bright and fizzy with a hint of jangle drawing on all the great power poppers spanning the decades. Kinks, a little Big Star, maybe some New Zealander stuff, 70s punk, 90s lo-fi pop, you get the idea. This guy is well-read when it comes to pop song-structures and has an incredibly firm grasp on his own songs. Troyer weaves seamlessly between tempos, verses, choruses, pre-choruses, bridges, codas, you name it. "Virgin Desolation" rolls along on a bed of lush keyboards, adding a bit of drama, shooting for semi-power ballad mode. There's a great, sprightly power pop riff in the bridge that pops up a couple times... oh man, do I love that part.
"Mr. Baker" is the highlight in my mind. It has perhaps a little more muscle to go with a slew of catchy melodies. By the end of the song they've all wormed their way inside my brain. It pumps along like a well-oiled machine, tambourine and all, and a pair of dueling guitar leads rip it up in the middle. Nice.
"What You're Told" really goes for that early 90s college rock jangle with nostalgic lyrics about "skipping out of school" and not doing what you're told. "Ice-Nine" (Cat's Cradle in the house!) is a great little synth/drum machine interlude. Kinda wished it had been developed into a full fledged song; it's a catchy son of a bitch. "Do You Know What I Mean?" has a great strut about it--though it manages to strut while it lopes, a unique feat. That's one of the interesting characteristics of the tape; Troyer exhibits lots of patience, never rushing tempos, or anything else.
"Delusional at Best" is a wonderfully lilting ballad to go out on. There's a touch of James Taylor which I definitely didn't see some coming but I dig it. Acoustic guitar and voice right up front with some odd reversed drums and electronic washes framing the song. Really nice track even though it dumps you abruptly into silence at the end.
Not sure if the thing is still available or not but inquiring to the label is worth a shot.

1 comment:

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