Decibully w/ Early Day Miners @ Mad Planet
Sept. 19, 2009
Early Day Miners picked up where they’d started in 2000. Their first release, Placer Found, a heartbreaking practice in introspective pop, had a mindset that was shared by artists such as Mark Kozelek and David Bazan at their solo height. The quartet, fleshed out with singer Daniel Burton’s swapped-out guitar/keyboard with depth-y pedal manipulations, created sweet and somber soundscapes, played in the typical late ’90s-early ’00s style of polite nerdery. The band’s preppy look and subdued but professionally stoic stage presence recalled other groups’ performance styles from that era. Whether this show was at Mad Planet or The Globe circa 2001, one could have easily squinted, and blurred the venue/time lines. The band’s new material (their first in nearly three years) blended nicely with the older material. Burton commented, “This is the first time that we’re in Milwaukee – have you guys been waiting for us to come here? We’ve been together for ten years!” Burton’s boyish and emotionally charged tenor vaporized slightly above the drummer’s persistent beats and the shimmery guitar chords that cut in throughout.
Decibully unwittingly brought the crowd back to the present when they took to the stage. The Milwaukee band, chasing the heels of their next self-release, subtly introduced the new in between a healthy offering of old favorites, keeping the enthusiastic crowd on their toes. They introduced their set with the old-school “Sing Out! Sing Out! Sing Out!” and “Penny Look Down,” and the local crowd couldn’t have been more pleased. It’s easy to be pleased as a fan and appreciate Decibully’s intricacy in composition even moreso live, because it’s audibly obvious that each instrument contributes a very important element. It’s easy to pick each out by ear and by sight: The six band mates have played together extensively, lending the sense of a glorified practice session to their performances, their enjoyment in playing together lending to the liveliness.
In compare and contrast, singer/guitarist William Seidel’s tenor purified his band’s lighthearted but sinewy music, whereas Burton’s tenor had moreso turned the Early Day Miners’ sound into a doleful lullaby. The crowd that had slightly held their collective breaths during the Early Day Miners set expelled their energy in whoops and hollers during and between Decibully’s performance. Seidel, in between tuning and checking his acoustic guitar, grazed the crowd with his eyes. “We have a new album coming out [World Travels Fast] …we’re gonna go on tour, too. It’ll be just a bunch of old guys sleeping on the floor,” he laughed, looking visibly energized about the prospect of hitting the road and doing some hardcore couch and floor-crashing. Decibully seems more than eager to take on their new album and a new tour; their energized performance on Saturday was demonstrative of the genuine enthusiasm the band has and the consequential cohesiveness they’ve gained. It’s Milwaukee’s luck and pride to have them show up the out of towners.