My Very Last Breath

My Very Last Breath

The Emo Diaries, Chapter Eight

Deep Elm

The Emo Diaries is a legendary series, and rightly so. The relatively simple concept — collecting unreleased tracks by emerging bands — has turned The Diaries into Deep Elm’s flagship drawcard. Further Seems Forever, The Appleseed Cast, Last Days of April, and Jimmy Eat World all graced this set at one point or another — an indicator of the high standard Deep Elm maintains. The eighth installment is no disappointment.

Logh’s “Guided Tour of a Dead Man’s House” is haunting and wistful — the group is clearly onto something special, and, like every track on here, they’re tight and honed without a trace of commercial dilution. At the punkier end of the spectrum, The Solo Project and Down-To-Earth Approach contribute fun, intelligent songs. The Home Team employ some gorgeous instrumentation in one of the most startlingly beautiful tracks I’ve heard in a long time.

Long Since Forgotten contribute a sweet, melodic cut that has all the hallmarks of alterno-pop hit, but without the gloss. Tracks like these couldn’t be called anything but emo, but the use of the term isn’t in a derogatory sense. And that’s the beauty of The Emo Diaries — they instill a much-maligned genre with a sense of dignity. The eclecticism of what’s collected here documents the progression and fusion of alternative music and punk, and also highlights the intangible element in emo that doesn’t seem to have its roots in anything that’s gone before.

Some of these bands will go on to fame; some will work steadily; other will fade into nothingness. The snapshot presented on My Very Last Breath sits alone, though — it’s not dependent on the future. If you own a Deep Elm record, or have any interest in this sort of music, I guarantee that you’ll discover several cool new groups on this CD.

Deep Elm Records: http://www.deepelm.com

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