First of all before I review this album I need to give you some background on my relationship with D.N.A. We’ll start in 06? Nate happened to be in town (Redding) and was a friend of a good friend. We were having a bunch of our friends play on our awesome porch. If you’ve ever seen DNA live you know they never stand in one spot, so it made for a great energetic show. I’m always taken back by Nate and Tessa’s passion and genuineness . When I lived in Reno they played on my porch again, and ever since then every time they come through town they crash on my couch, or a floor. I’m happy to call them good friends.
Lets dive into the album. The album opens with “Waking up is hard to do” this song is like an explosion of optimism, mixed with a crazy mix of organs, horns, grungy guitars, and an array of instruments. The first track pretty much starts the album off in stride preparing you for a very energetic, and fast paced album. DNA’s earlier works are all acoustic punk which translates very well to electric guitars. You can tell they stuck to their punk rock roots with the songs “Emergency” which is full of fast paced bar chords, accompanied by Dracula organs as well as giving the listener some insight into Nate and Tessa’s lives. It’s obvious that the band is enjoying themselves. This is evident with the song “Chick Flick.” As far as I know this is the first attempt by DNA to try some reggae, and they pull it off nicely, as well as revealing the love this married couple have for each other. One of the reasons I like DNA is they have substance to their songs. You can tell they are great people and I enjoy the stories within their songs. “We talk Occasionally On the Internet” constantly maintains a very full sound, from the palm muted verses, to some amazingly catchy bass lines and are just fun to listen to. There are few moments when any one musician truly stands out and is exceptional, but it’s never a bad thing. When the music gets fast the entire band plays faster, when it slows down, everyone follows suit perfectly. They play as a unit, not as individuals, and the sound they muster is unique and very enjoyable. I love how DNA’s songs have gravitated towards a ska feel. “Distracted Nate” This song was a pleasant surprise, seeing as they added a horn section. Im a ska fan and thought it fit great.The song delivers a brilliant ska chorus alongside a remarkable trumpet part that will amaze fans. This will be the track fans gravitate to, keep on repeat, and maybe even want to dance. (I know I did) The only negative thing I might say about the album is there are a few songs that may lose the listener and lessen the excitement of the album like ” Hospital” this song made me sort of nauseous. Basically the song is a true story how about how Tessa’s appendix burst, and she was very sick for a while. It goes into detail about her being cut open by the doctors etc.. However fans shouldn’t lose hope too quickly. The album changes gears a tad reminding listeners of DNA’s earlier works with “I need to know” This song is a quiet melody with a banjo lightly picking in the background. This is one of DNA’s best tracks to me because it’s very honest. I need to know/everything is gonna be ok/the sun will come out some day/and all these clouds will fade away. I think these words are something every person can relate to, and the song would fit well in a movie score.
Overall the album is a great catchy collection of songs. “With Our Powers Combined” is a pleasant surprise offering a mature-sounding DNA album that will surely win over the hearts of fans. There is certainly something for everyone on the album.
Listen to the album here: http://soundcloud.com/destroynateallen/sets/wopc/s-M5FoO