Review of Last Days of Summer Album by White Denim

Originally released as a free download in September 2010, Last Days of Summer is a collection of unused material and tracks from previous albums, all recorded over a couple of months. However with the success of 'D' released earlier in 2011, Last Days of Summer was given a genuine release; and boy was it worth it.

White Denim Last Days of Summer Album

Opener 'I'd Have It Just The Way We Were' invites you in with the upbeat rhythm and swaying Texan vocals, that White Denim make work so well. The sensual grooves of 'Tony Fatti' lean towards the jazz influences that are prominent in much of White Denim's material, whilst fourth track 'If You're Changing' opens with smooth, dreamy vocals and a subtle yet satisfying bassline, joined at intervals by a country- esque, finger picked guitar that flies in and out between the gentle chord strumming. The layers of instrumentation build up into an uplifting chorus of 'now that everything's changing where do we go now?' until the tone changes and vocalist/ guitarist James Petralli delivers a bluesy rhythm very much in contrast to the first half of the track, yet completely complimentary, a highlight of the album.

Steve Terrebecki's powerful bassline dominates the opening to 'Champ' with Petralli's swiftly delivered vocals joining in to create that avant- garde jazz sound White Denim are renowned for. It becomes apparent that in Last Days of Summer White Denim have established a sort of connection that enables them to structure each song in a way that keeps aspects of the jamming, that makes for such an enthralling live performance, but also ensures that each instrument has its place and retreats back when necessary getting the best out of the often heavenly material.

The mouth watering hooks that emerge from the layers of sound, combined with the technical drumming, smooth rhythms and distinct sounding vocals make Last Days of Summer a joy to listen to and a welcome addition to the growing bank of White Denim material.

James Hopkin

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