Early on this year’s Take Care Always and Have a Night Ahead (the band’s second proper full-length), Koss solidifies the album’s themes: Doubt, leading to reflection, which in turn creates self-awareness. “I wanted more / than I thought I had to want,” he explains on “Take Care,” mentally avoiding the proverbial eggshells. Elsewhere, like on the pulsating opener “Earn Your Love,” he at first recognizes a need for reassurance (“tell me I’m worth your time / That I am good / That I deserve all that I have”), only to coyly self-depricate himself a verse later with admissions like “I am vain / I deserve all that I get.” Throughout this record, Koss is constantly walking the line between nursing his wounds and picking at them, in cunning fashion. Go too far either way, and an album can become predictable, not building any sort of sympathy from listener to artist. But Koss’ approach constantly keeps one guessing - and almost craving - where his next line is going to take us.
Mixed by Larry Crane - whose resume includes Elliott Smith, The Decemberists and Jenny Lewis - at Jackpot! in Portland, OR, Take Care Always is the tightest and most original the band has ever been. “No One’s Ever Going to Notice” benefits from Bijalba and Rhein’s locked-in delivery, Koss’ acrobatic falsetto and guitars from he and Bonenberger that alternate patterns perfectly. Released earlier this year as a preliminary single, “I Know That I Can Find A Way (To Offend You)” stays true to the group’s dynamic while improving exponentially upon the arsenal of power they carry from tune to tune. Bonenberger and Koss’ guitars are pushed into a fiery twinkle, while Rhein and Bijalba’s rhythms midway through make for an unexpectedly massive rumble. While it could’ve easily been a B-side from The Strokes’ Is This It-era, it also doesn’t carry that band’s heavy weight of detachment. The Elements of Style are flesh and blood, first and foremost; the group’s magnetism is just an added bonus.
Late in the album, the one-two punch of “Thoughts” and “Where Did I Go?” rumble with tom-heavy percussion, but also manage their space well, easing up where appropriate. Closing out with the pop/rock shimmy of “Man On A Mission,” Take Care Always ends on a forceful note, with Koss nearly finding what he was looking for throughout the previous nine tracks: A purpose to move forward. He sounds fully realized delivering his final yelp, and as listeners, we want to go back to the beginning right away to hear again how the journey led him here.
Edited by bbonen on 1 Aug 2013, 14:31
Registered users can edit this page. Sign up now, it’s free and you will discover so much great music :)
Generated from facts marked up in the wiki.
No facts about this artist
You can also view a list of all recent wiki changes.
From other sources.