By Trevor Morelli
CALGARY – It’s been more than eight years since we last heard from Dashboard Confessional, but front man Chris Carrabba is feeling good about the band’s new album ‘Crooked Shadows’, out on February 9 via Dine Alone Records.
Carrabba is hanging out in Nashville (where he now lives), rehearsing and waiting for the snow to fall when reached on a blustery January day.
“I just feel like we had an objective and a creative goal, and we nailed it and then exceeded it,” Carrabba declares.
“I owe a lot of credit to my band mates and producers and friends, but also to my fan base who said ‘take your time’ and allowed us to take a lot of time.”
‘Crooked Shadows’ encapsulates everything great about Dashboard Confessional: loud, bright guitars, driving rhythms, and emotionally rich lyrics, among others.
However, Carrabba says crafting those soul-bearing lyrics and upbeat melodies took longer than usual.
“It took more time than ever before to find my voice, your point of view, your melodic tenancies that make it identifiable as the band that you’re in,” he explains.
He continues: “I needed to envision this record as if I was making the first Dashboard record. How would I make this record and how would it sound?”
“We Fight” was the first single; a poignant anthem for the underdogs, the people who have had to stand up and fight for everything they’ve earned in life.
In powerful chorus, Carrabba proclaims: “And we earned what we could from the ground up/And tried to lift the whole damn crowd up/So we fight our way in/And we fight our way out.”
“It’s a song that we’re excited to play in front of people. They started singing along to it recently,” he says with enthusiasm.
Whether it’s for Dashboard Confessional or for Twin Forks, his newer folk-influenced side project, Carrabba wants to continue writing great songs and learning from the experience.
“Just when you think you’ve got the hang of it, you break the pencil,” he confesses.
“I love to write. I love to write great songs and I love to write terrible songs. And if I was bagging groceries at the Piggly Wiggly, I’d love to write songs. And if I was a stock boy at Sears, I’d love to write songs. If I was an investment banker, I’d love to write songs.”
He concludes, “This is a thing I do because I love it. “
Dashboard Confessional will be playing the Commodore Ballroom on Wednesday, Feb. 21 (Vancouver), the Capital Ballroom on Friday, Feb. 23 (Victoria), the Kelowna Community Theatre on Sunday, Feb. 25 (Kelowna), MacEwan Hall on Tuesday, Feb. 27 (Calgary), Union Hall on Wednesday, Feb. 28 (Edmonton), O’Brian’s Event Centre on Friday, Mar. 2 (Saskatoon) and the Burton Cumming’s Theatre on Saturday, Mar. 3 (Winnipeg).Burton Cummings Theatre, Capital Ballroom, Commodore Ballroom, Crooked Shadows, Dashboard Confessional, Kelowna Community Theatre, MacEwan Hal, O'Brian's Event Centre, Union Hall