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DREAM VERSION – ‘Fight Fair’ Album Review


dream-versionSince they formed over drinks after work in 2013, Dream Version has consistently reminded their hometown of Chicago that we’re all human and none of us heroes.

Their first album Beginners was a melodic exploration of anxiety, tackling adulthood and career life with equal earnestness and irony in the tradition of Blur’s The Great Escape and the best satirical work of The Kinks. Singles from the album earned the band a lot of attention around Chicago, including a spot on Best of 2015 lists from CHIRP Radio and Chicago Mixtape.

On their second album Fight Fair, the band have packaged some quirky, cerebral songs that tell stories with some serious aplomb! I Wanna Be Angry opens with a pleasant guitar riff, is joined by some plaintive vocals, contains a simply weird keyboard middle eight and ends with some power chords…it’s good stuff with a Wire type sound.

The title track, Fight Fair, rumbles along with the bass guitar prominent, some odd keyboards and a unique vocal performance. I’m Still As Spoiled As The Day I Was Born is simply quirky with a spiraling synth, direct vocals and off-kilter rhythm. Dream Version channel The Fall on Warriors Of The Old World with a marching drumbeat, strummed chords and those up-front, wistful vocals. On Bathwater, a ‘submerged’ guitar sound and dreamy backing vocal are supported by a ticking drum and a spoken/sung vocal and the song builds nicely with some punkier guitar and vocals to deliver!

I Can See Everything rocks things up a bit with a Joy Division ambience and is followed by the eclectic Blinders sounding like a stripped down Devo! The echo/reverb infused guitar on Legacy Boys supports a vocal treatment that Damon Albarn would be proud of! Shame opens with some solo keyboard chords, descends into synth choral vocals and eventually concludes with a sorrowful vocal. The closer, Everybody’s Protest Song completes the 10-track package and it is a faster tempo effort with a unique approach across five minutes of guitar driven mournful rock and roll!

Dream Version plans to tour again this summer. Fight Fair was released on July 8th and is available here: https://dreamversion.bandcamp.com/