Ceres – Drag It Down on You

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Melody Bot, Oct 5, 2016.

  1. Melody Bot

    Your friendly little forum bot. Staff Member

    This article has been imported from chorus.fm for discussion. All of the forum rules still apply.

    Throughout most of the new Ceres album, Drag It Down on You, vocalist Tom Lanyon sounds pissed. Not pissed in the way that The Story So Far’s Parker Cannon sounds pissed, not the kind of pissed that makes you want to punch your bedroom wall, but the kind of pissed that makes you want to punch yourself. See, Lanyon and the rest of Ceres have done a lot of growing up since 2014’s remarkable debut, I Don’t Want to Be Anywhere But Here, and the result of that growth is the band’s sophomore album, which will go down as one of the best albums in an absolutely stacked year.

    A big part of that is Lanyon’s lyrics. Like I said, he’s done a lot of growing, and on this album he lays that all out. From his childhood home to the deaths of old friends, even to the times when he’s been unequivocally in the wrong — he runs through all the things that make him who he is. It’s one of the most honest and self-aware albums I’ve heard all year, not to mention one of the most mature. It’s easy to lash out when you mess up and even easier to just pass the blame. Lanyon takes the high road on Drag It Down on You, accepting his mistakes for what they are, whether he’s declaring himself “such a piece of shit” on “’91, Your House,” or condemning his past controlling behavior on “Baby’s Breath.” The final verse of that song, especially, is one of the most sincere apologies I’ve heard in song form. I mean, read it yourself:


    Who am I to tell you how to feel your pain?
    Like relief lives inside both your parents names
    Losing one but gaining one to blame
    I know you’re not me, I’ll learn that one day
    I know, I’m sorry
    Missing a lot of things

    Lanyon called Drag It Down on You the “darkest stuff I’ve got out into songs,” and I think he says it better there than I could. Musically, though, the album is a bit lighter. For instance, the album’s first full track, “Happy in Your Head,” is more or less a fuzzy power-pop song. The band does get darker on a few tracks, and unsurprisingly, these are by and large the album’s best. “Baby’s Breath,” both a lyrical and musical highlight, is probably the most aggressive song, building from one distorted riff to a cacophony of feedback at the end of the song. Now, the start-quiet-end-loud structure certainly isn’t unique to Ceres, but they play around with it enough to make it feel like a distinctly-Ceres style.

    Songs like “Talking” and “Okay” ebb and flow naturally, toying with listener expectations, building and dropping out unexpectedly. “Okay,” the opener, literally drops out, cutting off Lanyon mid-sentence. A bit jarring on first listen, maybe, but it’s a clever way for the song itself to mimic its themes, and it flows into “Happy” pretty well. “Choke” is another song that inverts this structure, building up for a minute to explode into an absolutely massive song, and then, as the song should hit its peak, ending with an intimate, beautiful string outro. The pieces combine into not only the best track Ceres has ever written, but one of the most exciting songs you’ll hear all year.

    And that’s just the thing — Drag It Down on You is exciting. There are flashes of all sorts of bands here and there – immediate comparisons to The Hotelier, Born Without Bones, The Sidekicks, and The Get Up Kids – but at the same time the whole album feels fresh in a way that most similar albums don’t. Maybe that feeling’s just the feeling of honesty and necessity behind every word and every note. I’m not sure. But I’m sure that Ceres has delivered one of the best albums of the year, and I’m sure you’ll be kicking yourself if you don’t check them out now before they become one of 2017’s breakout bands.

     
  2. Damien Davies

    Trusted Supporter

    Great review Zac, but I have to say I'm surprised to see this here, I guess because this site doesn't cover Australian artists very often. It's a pleasant surprise though. :-)
     
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  3. teebs41

    Prestigious Supporter

    Such a good record. I don't care where they are from this is going to compete for a spot in my top 10 this year
     
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  4. alexjlow

    Newbie

    This is really good, thanks for the rec!
     
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  5. Zac Djamoos

    goodness, present and hallowed Prestigious

    Thanks! I found them because I scoured Hobbledehoy's (Australian label) roster after being obsessed with Arrows and ceres' name stuck with me. Really glad they did because this album is something else
     
  6. sean_rugy

    often but not always Supporter

    top 5 album for me in a STACKED year. if this came out any other year, it would take my top spot.
     
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  7. teebs41

    Prestigious Supporter

    Probably would be in my top 2 or 3 last year. Idk dealer tho
     
  8. Bartek T.

    D'oh! Prestigious

    I skimmed through a few tracks and it sounds quite interesting, need to check the whole album out!
     
  9. sean_rugy

    often but not always Supporter

    I love looking at my followed threads and seeing the little blue dot next to this one
     
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  10. sean_rugy

    often but not always Supporter

    @Zac Djamoos are all lyrics to the songs out there? reading that Baby's Breath line brought it all full circle for me.
     
  11. Zac Djamoos

    goodness, present and hallowed Prestigious

    Not that I know of, no. I found an interview with him, though, which had excerpts from each of the songs and he'd elaborate on them, and that's how I got that. Haha.
     
  12. teebs41

    Prestigious Supporter

    We will forever have the connection of being the only people freaking out about this the weekend it was replaced in the album thread ha
     
  13. sean_rugy

    often but not always Supporter

    what a bond! this album will be a constant standout, it's one of those albums I didn't know I needed until I listened to it. that's coming from someone who was a HUGE fan of their debut.
     
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  14. Yellowcard2006

    Regular

    Fantastic review for a fantastic album.
     
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  15. joshuaharris

    Newbie

    This is one of the best albums that I've heard in awhile. The end of "Baby's Breath" is just perfect.
     
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  16. Aj LaGambina

    Hey man, we all can't be like you Supporter

    Record is too good.
     
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  17. Zac Djamoos

    goodness, present and hallowed Prestigious

  18. Aj LaGambina

    Hey man, we all can't be like you Supporter

    Someone mentioned these guys in the Microwave thread a couple days ago, so I'm a reeeeeally new one, but yeah. Good record, great review!
     
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  19. Zac Djamoos

    goodness, present and hallowed Prestigious

    They definitely seem like your kinda thing, haha. Check out their debut too if you get a chance! And thanks my friend
     
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  20. Damien Davies

    Trusted Supporter

    I went out today and bought the CD of this because I was so sure I bought it on bandcamp before my old computer died, but I didn't, and I wanted to listen to it after reading your review.
     
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  21. Zac Djamoos

    goodness, present and hallowed Prestigious

    Then I guess the review worked, haha. Hopefully you'll love it like I do!
     
  22. Damien Davies

    Trusted Supporter

    Was pretty great on my drive home. On my second listen now.
     
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  23. Zac Djamoos

    goodness, present and hallowed Prestigious

    Glad to hear it! Man I hope this album catches on haha
     
  24. Saephon

    Regular

    Wonderful review Zac. Just wanted to let you know, after one spin I've already fallen in love with this record, and so has my girlfriend. I had it on the car tonight while driving home, and she demanded to know who they were.
     
  25. Zac Djamoos

    goodness, present and hallowed Prestigious

    Thank you! I'm glad it seems like a lot of people really like this record. Be sure to check out their debut too, even though this one's better, that one is great too. What're your favorite songs?
     
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