Album Review: A Day Overdue - Secrets

Glasgow-based five piece A Day Overdue claim, on their MySpace profile, that they are involved in “unprecedented levels of fan interaction”. It certainly seems that in this day and age of Twitter, Facebook and whatever other social networking site seeks to live off artist-to-fan interaction on another level, that bands have to be accessible to stand a chance. With debut album 'Secrets' they need to make that accessibility extend over to the music or, surely, it’s all for nothing.

'Secrets' kicks off with some promising woah-ohs opening up 'After The Accident', a catchy, full energy, McFly meets early-Fall Out Boy slice of powerpop. A Day Overdue clearly know what they’re aiming for and there’s no harm in that - in fact, 'Secrets' is probably all the better for the crystal clear vision the band have. The song has been written a hundred times before but there’s a fresh, new energy to it so it doesn’t feel worn out just yet.

'Scream!' is the strongest track, effortlessly catchy and energetic, but it’s 'Kicking & Screaming' that stands out the most. A slightly flawed but hummable and enjoyable lament about (what else?) a girl. In much the same way, a couple of songs later, 'Addicted' provides another standout moment. It’s the songs that have the clearest lyrics, the ones that have an audience of misunderstood teens somewhere between loosing Busted and finding New Found Glory (...did I just age myself there?) just waiting to feel understood that stand out because they are so clearly the songs that this band exists to make. It’s the songs that have the capacity to, at whatever base level, speak to people. 'Relapse', on the other hand, stands out purely because of the well-placed backing piano. It may not be the most groundbreaking idea but it’s good and it works.

It’s hard to put a finger on exactly who A Day Overdue’s music is reminiscent of but that could well be because it sounds a bit like everything. Powerpop/pop-punk is by no means an underground genre and it’s one that’s clearly been studied, the best bits picked out and the filler dropped. Every song is repetitive, but solid. It’s the sound of a band finding its feet.

In the end, though, 'Secrets' fails to reach its potential. It’s not a case of lacking originality - if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it - but for a current pop-punk/powerpop release to stand out it has to hit every target. With so much competition in a very much saturated music scene even a tiny flaw can take an album out of the running and the problem that 'Secrets' suffers from is poor production. The guitars aren’t clean enough, the drums aren't powerful enough and, most damagingly of all, the vocals just don’t pop. This is unfortunate, as the band are grouped in such a lyrically-driven genre. All the catchy hooks and clever melodies can erase the need for the sincerity of the lyrics to be able to shine though.

2.5/5

'Secrets' by A Day Overdue is out now.

A Day Overdue on MySpace and Facebook.

Francesca Vaney

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