The State We’re In by Dog Is Dead

Stop the press! The dog is well and truly alive again! After waiting patiently for four years, D. I. D have finally released a follow up to their debut album All Our Favourite Stories. But good things come to those who wait, and it’s safe to say that The State We’re In is as good as it gets.

From the moment you delve into the hair trigger action of ‘Fast Food’, you know this is new territory for the boys from Nottingham. It’s clinical and more diverse, less afraid to explore harder and more exotic sounds. Just as you’ve settled into the pleasant flow of the opening songs, the heavy distortion of ‘Hotel’ comes from nowhere to keep you guessing as to the album’s next direction. Yet it still remains grounded in what D. I. D do best: clever and catchy, smartly balanced song writing.

It’s the endlessly splendid melodies that make The State We’re In such a charming listen. Rob Milton’s nasally style provide the vocal lines with an appealing magnetic identity, beautifully evident in ‘Killer Whale’ and ‘The State We’re In’. The harmonies provided by the rest of the band are perfect throughout; their layered nature leaves the album constantly fulfilled and hardly ever feeling empty.

The only real negative is the band seems to have lost their saxophone. WHERE’S THE SAX, TREV!? But saxlessness aside, the steady progression from somewhat easy listening into the more sombre sounds of the album’s finale take you on a journey you don’t want to end. By the time ‘I Meant To Hurt You’ gloriously steals your heart, you’re left wondering where this album has been all your life.

The State We’re In is a solid addition to D. I. D’s blossoming catalogue. Let’s hope it’s a much shorter wait for their next one.

Robert Cairns

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