Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Matt Oliver, Mastered by Sam Patlove
Teen Daze hides his songs sometimes. They get written, recorded and performed as slick dance music feels like great music to back a buzz. You're halfway off and into a night and you start hearing about feelings and stuff, but it's not there to distract you too much. It's just there to help you get a little more buzz and to loosen up the tongue, start making that night work for you, not against you. It's always felt great to let yourself go, to just not care too much about what's going to be happening next. It's fine to just be carried away on the waves and the music on "Four More Years" and a couple other short run, self-releases that the Vancouver, British Columbia musician has put out have no problem putting you there. Often, the vocals are the aspects you're going to hear the least and it's the intention, but right inside those fading sun songs are second fading suns and parts to the songs that should be focused on a little more. You find yourself losing track of how old you are and where you are in your own lives when you dig into the lyrics, which are front and center in these rare and special versions, recorded here as plain guitar and piano ballads, when he was passing through Austin in December. You hear these songs as the rapid advancement of time, running over a person who can't begin to consider this happening to him yet. It's about leaving when the last thing that he remembers doing is arriving and unpacking his bags. There's a depressing, but thrilling and understandable urgency to these songs of graying days. People are moving on and things are not going to remain as they once were for very much longer. There seems to be a central character in these songs who is reluctant to embrace this course of nature though. It's as if everything's just being done to the character, without him having any ability to affect too much. It gives you this feeling of uncomfortable calm that still sounds like it's somewhat blessed and all the way golden - as if there are certainly worse things happening to people right know. "The Harvest" is a song that starts with a line about the logs being stacked up, ready for the winter needs, but the logs could just as easily be replaced with deck chairs and it could be a companion piece to "Gone For The Summer," with the general sentiment one of proceeding, of getting on with something because there's no way around it. A man is about to board a bus on "The Harvest," to get out of town, and you can just picture that character as someone who forgot to bring anything to read on that endlessly long ride through some dead land, thinking silently and talking to no one for hours on end, trying to put it all together, trying to figure out where he'll be when he actually gets off the bus, even when he technically will know precisely where he is. It's the way this daze works.