Everything I Love About Together Pangea is Packed into this Brand New Album
Together Pangea, the rowdy garage band from LA, has just released their 5th full-length album, entitled DYE on Nettwerk Records. It’s chock full of new and interesting tracks as they’ve clearly made an effort to stay true to their unique blend of sounds and influences and amplify feelings of angst, boredom, and introspection. And the band themselves are clearly all for this album too:
You can stream the album everywhere now. Here’s our track-by-track review:
#1 – “Marijuana”
Ok, good start with the track title here. This song is a ripper right off the start. Catchy chorus about smoking marijuana. This is probably the darkest feeling track on the album.
#2 – “One Way or Another”
Love the lyrics to this one. “One way or another, can’t have it both ways, one way or another, can’t have it any way.” How many times do you feel like that, and how many times do you think someone else needs to hear that? This is still a really fun and energetic song though.
#3 – “Rapture”
Classic heavy Together Pangea riff here. Great rhythm section really stands out in this track as well as the screaming vocals of William Keegan. Lyrics here are very interesting as well. “It’s not some king returning, it’s just a country burning” is a pretty caustic lyric calling for a wake-up call for anyway who sees now as a rapturous moment rather than just crazy difficult times.
#4 – “Wanted Out”
This track is a more classic type of punk sound, but with impressive and nuanced layering and production. There’s a driving rhythm section here and heavy guitar riffs, but also some interesting melody building from other guitars mixed in. The build to the end of this song is huge, this will definitely be a killer live track.
#5 – Alabama
Coming off the very dark and punkish types of tracks of the last two songs, “Alabama” has a very different feel at the start of the track. It opens sounding a bit more like a power-pop song before the heavier guitars and crashing drums come in for an interlude to the second verse. Where this song really stands out is the chorus with the layering of the lead and backing vocals finishing with a great solo guitar hook into a long second half instrumental to end the track. This might be my favorite song on the album.
#6 – Little Line
Things once again start off a little slower on this track. Once again, it sounds like a song The Jayhawks could have done 30-odd years ago. One thing that really starts to stand out to you at this point in the album, is that all these tracks are impeccably produced. Piano, layered guitars, hi-hats, lead and backing vocals blended to create an almost folkish type of track here.
#7 – Cold Water
Now this song fucking rules. Back to a little more recognizable Together Pangea type of sound here. “Cold Water” is a song that really builds. Most of my favorite songs from this band (and really in general) are built around a 1.) hook (check), 2.) layered instrumentals that build tension up to the chorus (check), and 3.) a crescendo from the bridge to a final breakdown which makes a track especially great live (check). Also the “I’m an idiot” lyrical refrain in the chorus really speaks to me for some reason.
#8 – Turn Time
Ok, so once again things take a bit of a turn on this song. Once again we have our friend the piano, now paired with a stripped down melody and clicking, train-track type of rhythm, more reminiscent of a country or folk song than anything. Together Pangea certainly has a catalog of diverse sounding songs, so this track doesn’t completely throw me for a loop here, but trigger warning, there is some slide guitar also happening in this song. That said, this track is still very good and a nice change of pace in the middle of the album to keep you listening.
#9 – Somehow
Now this is what I’m talking about. Back to a sweaty stage in a dark, cramped room with this track. “I’m sick of this infatuation with myself” is an interesting lyrical refrain in this track. The lyrics on this album are really quite good and require a second or third listen to really get the whole message which is a hallmark of a well-written and re-listenable, addictive album.
#10 – Ghoul
Ghoul is just such a good word, and the lyric “if I was a ghoul for you” is just excellent. I won’t even pretend to know what that means, but I like it. This is a track that really just works on an album like this. It’s not particularly different or life-changing, but when you’re trying to put 12 good tracks on an album this is a great song to fill in the gaps of the hit-makers and really unique songs.
#11 – Nervous
Similar feelings toward this song as “Ghoul.” Just a really solid track, and a nice chorus to help stitch together the sound and themes of the album as a whole. These types of tracks help the album seem like a complete entity and not just 12 random tracks. Respect to the band and producers for the track ordering and choice here.
#12 Nothing to Hide
The guitar hook on this track and singing make it feel a lot like a early-2000s type of quasi-emo pop song, something the like of Jimmy Eat World or even The Killers might have put together. Really strong track to end on here, love the guitars on this one.
“I’ll try to make you feel like I do inside, still maybe you’ll find somebody who will” From “Little Line”