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Top Ten Albums of 2020 - 2. Disq - Collector
Narrowly missing out on number one spot in our favourite albums of 2020, post-punk meets power-pop with Wisconsin's Disq.
Born as a high school two-piece, frontman Isaac deBroux-Slone and bassist Raina Bock have been friends and musical allies since toddlerhood, Disq have grown into a quintet over recent years and there is a significant amount of buzz developing around the Madison, Wisconsin outfit.
As a duo, Disq garnered attention through online music site Bandcamp, where their 2016 collection of songs, aptly titled Disq I, is a glimpse into the origin story of one of the United States' hottest guitar bands out there right now.
Fleshing out the band with Shannon Connor (guitar/keys), Logan Severson (guitar/backing vocals), and Brendan Manley (drums), Disq have been working their way through the "close-knit music community" of their hometown Madison.
The band signed to Saddle Creek and saw their debut album Collector released in March of this year to the veneration of critics and fans alike.
Rather than following strict guidelines in terms of style and theme, Collector is made up from various demos from each individual member's back catalogue, perfected together as a group, and selected in order to ensure the album "gelled cohesively".
Opening track 'Daily Routine' immediately sets the tone for an album built on millennial misery and an assessment of the mundanity of life. With the lyrics "I see the people who spend their lives in a worthwhile shine / I'm laying down spending my life on wasting time" there is a stark relatability to almost anyone who spent teenage years feeling lost.
The following track 'Konichiwa Internet' seems to follow in the same footsteps; "who can I tell about everything / when I don't even know about anything for myself?", an air of loneliness and complication rings through.
'Really Trying' draws on the emotions of feeling inadequate, with a little bit of teen heartbreak thrown in, whilst 'D19' mocks the tradition love song by turning the object of adoration into a dynamic microphone.
'Fun Song 4' does what it says on the tin as the band experiment with some low-fi beats in an instrumental interlude. 'Trash' offers another sonically different tune to the rest of the album as the grunge-esc electric guitar is swapped out for a submissive acoustic melody.
The final track on the record 'Drum In' offers a stream of consciousness song, again detailing a disconnection with the world around us. This is the song that bassist Raina feels is the closest sound to where the band will be heading with future music.
Disq's debut album Collector is a nostalgic dose of nineties twinged punk with modern day lyricism and uplifting undertones throughout. The obvious themes of youth are present, but they are represented through matured music that knows how to be expressive and how to hook the listener.
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