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Departures - Teenage Haze
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All the way from Glasgow, Departures presents Teenage Haze, the follow-up to their self-titled album from 2011 and debut release on No Sleep Records. Behind the UK-based pop-punk band are founding members James McKean, Daniel Nash, Andrew Traynor, Sean Cosgrove, and Alistair Morrison. Departures send listeners on a departure of their own to a land of artificial bliss with a dash of teen angst. They’re hardcore all the way to the core.
Although the vocals are literally “Drained Out,” Departures powerfully opens the album on this track. Distinguishing the actual words might trip up the eardrums, but once the instruments lull, the listener subconsciously drifts off into the scream-induced haze that has been cast by amiable guitars riffs and boisterous drumming. Everything sounds so in tune and in sync, making the song almost last forever, but at the end of it all, they’re trying to wake you up. “I woke up next to you, but it wasn’t the same,” McKean yells.
“Making Maps” carries this tone and amps it up even more. “21” brings up sentiments of falling out of love and losing control. The song is intense with strong vocals, steady guitar riffs, and thrashing drums. The lyrics are grim, showcasing the destruction of a romantic relationship. “I keep trying to say goodbye, I can’t find the words. For what it’s now worth, I wish I’d never met you,” McKean says. It’s a direct punch to the heart, aimed at someone who either broke his heart or fucked him over.
“Teenage Haze” would be featured on a soundtrack to a teenage dream: well, maybe a dark and disturbed teenager. This entirely instrumental song falls on the tranquil side, completely at ease with a softer and quieter tone. Morrison really shows off on the drums here while the guitarists and bassist feed off each other. This track really highlights Departures’ strengths behind McKean’s vocals.
“Where The Time Will Go” seems more like three songs wrapped into one as it starts off slow and then accelerates to the speed of light, but it is pleasant to listen to nonetheless. McKean’s vocals are impressive on this track in particular. His energy can be heard as he consistently screams and shouts. More in the mix of the sound, his vocals ring strained and even shot, giving the track rawness. The snare roll at the end kicks the track back into gear, pumping up the volume and the tempo.
Closing the album with “Small Steps” is like watching something slowly burn—it’s so irresistible that looking away from the flame would ruin the moment. The slower tempo emphasizes every word shouted out of McKean’s mouth that can be understood so clearly and concisely.
Departures just released their incredible new album, Teenage Haze, via No Sleep Records, and we are so happy to have the band doing a Track-By-Track feature for the record on PropertyOfZack. Download the album here and check out the Track-By-Track from Danny and James of Departures below!
When we wrote this one it was obvious straight away it was gonna open the record. Chord structure wise it’s not a million miles off Swallowed Up the first track on our last album, which wasn’t deliberate but it just had a sort of ‘upbeat opening song’ air to it. This song sets the theme for the rest of the record, I suppose. It describes the ending of a relationship and the reasons behind why it failed. It also touches on that sentimental and romantic viewpoint you can sometimes take, when a relationship ends and you convince yourself that things were a whole lot better than they were, but then the reality of the situation hits you and you realise why it ended.
The opening few tracks on this album are all the fast ones actually, not sure why that happened but here we haveMaking Maps. This was the second song we wrote for the album, I only remember that because we only had this to play when we did the Balance & Composure tour at the start of August, the rest were written in the couple of weeks between that tour ending and recording beginning. Lyrically, mortality is something that I think about often, probably too often to be honest. Death fascinates me, as it does everyone I suppose, but I have quite a fixation on it.
21 is one of those songs that just came together really quickly. It took us about 45 minutes to write, mostly made up on the spot. As usual though that makes for one of the highlights of the album, there was no doubt that this would be the first track we let people hear. It’s worked out that me and Danny co write lyrics on one song per album, Midnight Lights on the last album and 21 is the song on this album. It’s almost self explanatory; it comes from a place and situation a lot of people have experienced. Being left so deeply affected by a relationship that’s ended that it stays with you for years. I think the song’s simplicity is what makes it work; anybody who’s ever been in that position will understand what’s being said here.
The Home Stretch
This is the first song we wrote for Teenage Haze, listening back to it it’s fairly obvious we weren’t sure where the album was going this time around. This doesn’t sound remotely like anything off of When Losing Everything… it’s very down tempo and has a fair bit of space, it has a verse-chorus-verse-chorus structure which isn’t generally something we do (not deliberately, we just aren’t very good at it). I really like the big chord-y bit in the middle of this, again it doesn’t really sound like our typical way of doing things. As for the lyrics, it’s often surrounded with much negativity and derision when people say they are still in the same town they grew up in, and this song weighs up whether this really is such a bad thing or not. I recently moved away from my home town of Falkirk, but as much as I enjoy being in a place where there is more to go, the pull of home is always going to be strong for me
This started out as an intro to Those Miles Meant Everything, but quickly became its own thing. A good 70% of the guitars on this song were made up on the spot while we were recording it; we went down with a drum beat and a single guitar line. We’re really happy with how it turned out though, and it still leads into the next track which is…..
Those Miles Meant Everything
This is the only song we chose to re-record. This was originally on our 7” from the start of the year Green Turns To Red, Then Turns To Gold, but the recording of that cost us nothing and we always felt you could hear it haha. We didn’t feel the song had been done justice, and it fit in with the way we’d gone with our song writing, we always knew we’d end up putting this on the album and it sounds so much better now. This song echoes the sentiments of ‘21’, but at the same time can be applied to not just a relationship, but friendship too, and how some things just end and that useless feeling that there’s absolutely nothing you can do about it.
Where The Time Will Go
This is probably the most typically hardcore song we wrote this time around, we went in with the mindset of just ‘lets write a fast one’. Originally we’d planned on the first part (the whole section with just vocals and one guitar) and the main song to be split up into two tracks, but once we’d recorded the song it felt slightly ridiculous to do that, as neither part really worked without the other. There are a lot of changes in this song, it’s almost a sister song toDisappointment from our first album. Mostly all the lyrics I write can be seen as negative or based in a lot of sadness. The first portion could be taken that way I guess, but it really isn’t at all, it’s more a statement of commitment. The second half weighs up what happens when things come to an end, and the answer is that everything just keeps going.
It’s the weekend, so PropertyOfZack is back with a brand new Team Recommendation Playlist. Each weekend, different members of our team will be recommending both old and new songs for our viewers to listen to and enjoy. Check out the team Playlist and listen to the songs on Spotify while reading everyone’s thoughts!
Underøath- In Regards To Myself
After reading the news that they were dismantling this week, I immediately knew my team recommendation would come from Underøath, but the true question still remained, what song and from which album? After a lot of consideration I landed on In Regards To Self from Underøath’s album Define The Great Line. Not only do I truly feel this is the groups best work as a whole, this song kicks off the album in a truly gruesome chainsaw like manner. While I previously enjoyed They’re Only Chasing Safety, I much perfered the heavier and more mature sound found in the next album. This song really sets the tone for the whole album, and it’s a massively brutal tone. The guitars are crunchy, the drums fast paced however they are anything but sloppy and the back and forth sing/scream vocals were the best this genre had ever seen. R.I.P. Underøath - Hobbes (@waitrewindthat)
A Day To Remember - If It Means A Lot To You
Some good old sentimental acoustic. I’ve always wanted to sing a duet with somebody to this song. I love old A Day To Remember and Four Year Strong acoustic music. It just seems sincere. Not a fan of some (or most) of the new ADTR, but this song sticks. Especially, when it kicks up the the chant vocals. It’s an emotional song. Me and my friends (Ryan, Brandon, Ben, Eric,…) will crank this up for a bromance love song! Good times. The news that Chad Gilbert is working with ADTR for their new music gives me hope for some better ADTR to come. We’ll see. (Fingers crossed, was not a fan of What Separates Me From You). I love duets. - Mike Sheffey
New Found Glory - Boulders
Coming Home is surely New Found Glory’s least popular album, and while it may not be my “favorite,” it certainly means the most to me out of their great discography. “Boulders” is one song on the album that I truly love. Between the lyrics and Sherri DuPree (Eisley)’s incredible guest spot at the end, it just rocks. If you haven’t listened to this record since it came out, listen again. “Oxygen” is also one of NFG’s best tracks, and it’s the opener on this record. - Zack Zarrillo
Departures – 21 *Song is not on Spotify
Finally here in California it is just now starting to feel like Fall, and for whatever reason that is a season that makes me very introspective and evaluate aspects of my life that I don’t typically examine. This song was my company yesterday. This band just recently got sent to me via a friend from the UK who I trust musically. This song floored me. It has energy, emotion, aggression and enough space in the song to be able to take a breath. For anyone who is a fan of anything by Touche Amore, La Dispute and the like will discover their new favorite band. A job well done. - Ray Harkins (@100wordspodcast)
Green Day - Who Wrote Holden Caulfield?
The first problem with “back to the roots” albums is the impossibility of shedding a lifetime’s experience to recapture ‘that old feeling’. The second is that, in this age of iTunes and Spotify, it’s just as easy to go listen to those roots as it is to play the new stuff. Kerplunk! might have turned 20 this year, but its teenage desperation remains as fiercely vital as ever (and more real than anything on the steaming pile of dookie that is ¡Uno!). - Jesse Richman (@jrichmanesq)
Title Fight - Head In The Ceiling Fan
When Title Fight publicly released the first song from their newest album Floral Green, a lot of fans were shocked at the disparity between this and their louder, more aggressive tracks from Shed. To me however this song is a fantastic example of Title Fight developing their sound in an extremely creative way. A band this young who have found success could very easily be happy with crafting a sound and sticking to it, but Title Fight continue to evolve with every new album they put out. Was the rest of the album as much of a departure from their sound? No. But this particular track showed me exactly what Title Fight is capable of, and that sometimes, you just need to gaze at your shoes. - Connor Sheehan (@connorpoz)
PropertyOfZack is glad to be bringing you an exclusive stream of a new Departures song called “Signals.” The band will be releasing a new five-song EP titled Without Fear on March 10th, and this is just one of the great tracks off of it. Click play to stream the track below:
(For Tumblr Users: Click the direct link to listen)