On their debut album, You Kids!, The D.A. prove they know how to rock, while challenging any rocker to strap on their dancing shoes. The 5-piece group from the Southwest fuses horns, synth, and solid rock rhythm into an unforgettable sound that has already gained popularity throughout the United States.
Most songs on the album consist mainly of traditional indie rock rhythms, where the bass and drums lay down a solid beat, allowing the guitar and horns to emphasize singer Tyler Durdley’s heartfelt lyrics. On top of all this, Cesar Muniz adds a new level to equation by introducing a partially poppy synth that acts more to fulfill the sound rather than take over it. While this is noticeable in all the tracks, this modest performance is most exceptional in their lead single, “Pastels.” The album is consistent in its usual melodic calmness, which then explodes vivaciously; not so much as an electro-house song, but enough to get fans on their feet. The D.A. creates a sound that blends some of the best of indie rock today. The vocals are sometimes biting, but are most comparable to a mix of Modest Mouse and Cage the Elephant. The band itself is not very different from the likes other indie bands, with driving rhythm similar to Bloc Party, and guitar like almost any other successful indie rock group. The band differs in its combination of horns and synth with these classic indie rock grooves.
“Pastels,” embodies the sound and pure genius that the band has to offer. While the song is more laidback, the grooving drive from the drums and bass are unforgettable and will get anybody out of their seats and onto the dance floor. This song’s mix of slow, whimsical melody and driving indie beat create a sound that feels more refreshing than anything else.
Conversely, Their finale, “Colors” is a more upbeat, rock tune that opens with fast paced synth, promptly followed by the rest of the groups equally lively tone. Again, bassist Stephen Escarzaga and drummer Evan Tremper create a memorable rhythm that will make every head nod and every foot tap as the song pushes forward. Also, Tyler Durdley’s guitar takes a lead role with noticeably striking chords and riffs, even as the song progresses into softer, calmer territory. The D.A. concludes their first album with a dramatic halt to the fast-paced chorus with slow, almost melancholic horns that symbolize the very end of a journey, yet offering a new journey to be told in the future.
Overall, the album creates an experience that is more than enjoyable. The group’s combination of dance and rock offers a sound not widely heard in today’s musical environment. There is much to anticipate from this group, considering this is their first major album since the release of the singles “Pastels” and “Big Woman.” The band self-released You Kids! which can only mean more creative genius unhindered by a record-label’s sometimes stifling direction. Keep and eye out for The D.A.—-they are on their way to becoming one of the big names in indie rock.