POZ Review: Twin Forks - Twin Forks
by Jason Stives, edited by Erik van Rheenen
It’s hard to imagine Chris Carrabba performing under any umbrella other than Dashboard Confessional…except, well, maybe Further Seems Forever. With Twin Forks, his new folk themed outfit, there seems to be a departure in what the world’s most beloved single guy has to say now that he is approaching 40, and that’s really a good thing. With the last few Dashboard releases, it seemed like Carrabba had run out of things to talk about in regards to loneliness and longing, and here he trades in those woes for something with a spring to its step, filled with optimism and a lot of mandolin. The result is an album with a sense of autopilot but a welcomed joy that screams “callooh callay,” if you like using those words.
I’ll admit up front: I’m a sucker for Irish-tinged celebration music, and that is basically the framework of this record. The tempo and overall change in style is immediate with opening track “Can’t Be Broken,” bleeding folk undertones and a sun-beaming sense of Americana. Every track has more uplift than it does regret, providing something that is far more accessible for car rides and parties than nights alone headphones resting on your head as you lie on your bed. Those feelings weren’t a bad thing, but it gives new light to the successes of love that Carrabba didn’t always display, instead usually focusing on the anticipation and fleeting moments. “Plans” in particular has a heartfelt quality about planning your day and even life around that special someone as you jot down the thoughts before telling that person about it when you see them.
What’s evident is that this feels more like a band than it does sound just like Carrabba under a new moniker, because there is a full sound that shows off instead of being the background to his lush lyrics and ageless voice. Perhaps his reunion with Further Seems Forever instilled a love for having a band again, because there is a lot of care here with the very distinct instrumentation. Drummer Ben Homola of Bad Books fame keeps the backbeat with a great display of grandeur in his rollicking and batten-down-the-hatches amplified drumming skills, making each song feel like a jaunt or a sprint.