I remember when Dashboard Confessional was just the solo album by the lead singer from Further Seems Forever. I remember seeing Chris preform to 30 people in a small church in Mitchellville, Md. And then I remember MTV unplugged and the emo explosion that found Chris Carrabba as it’s poster boy. When Dashboard ditched the acoustic guitar for a full band I tuned out. I enjoyed Swiss Army Romance and The Places You Have Come to Fear The Most had a special place in my heart but honestly Further Seems Forever’s The Moon is Down was such a better record and held such a place in my heart that Dashboard Confessional would always be out matched. And though while I’ve heard songs and albums, nothing Dashboard Confessional has done has hit a chord with me.
So Alter the Ending was posted on myspace for our listening pleasure and I gave it a listen and sadly I was instantly hooked. Chris and the guys in Dashboard have created some of the best songs they’ve ever put together. And although the album falls short at places, Alter the Ending kept me listening and enjoy most of what I heard.
Get It Right is the most spiritual song Chris has ever written, even more so then anything with FSF. Get It Right, Until Morning, and Everybody Learns From Disaster are 3 great straight forward rock songs that keep Alter the Ending moving. The albums first single, Belle of the Boulevard, a very pretty song (that sounded terrible on the Tonight Show), sound very familiar to Dashboard’s last single, Stolen. I love this song.
The album breaks down half way through with Blame it on the Changes and Even Now. Although I didn’t think I’d get through the record without ballads and acoustic songs, Alter the Ending had been a high energy rock record and while Blame It On the Changes fits, Even Now seems slows and misplaced. The Motions is more high energy but the record really peters outs and didn’t leave me really wanting more. And I like Hell on the Throat for a closing song, the way we get there isn’t very impressive.
Alter the Ending is front loaded with great songs and is a highly enjoyable record. And if you buy the special edition you get an acoustic version of the album. It’s a different take on the songs and is nice but isn’t anything special.