REVIEW: Dispatch - Circles Around The Sun

After not having recorded new music for almost 11 years, Dispatch hit us all with their self titled EP in 2011, but didn't stop their. Their first full album of new music in 12 years, "Circles Around The Sun," is everything that Dispatch fans have come to love about the band and more. The biggest standout of the album is it is reggae-free, something that may seem like a downside, but it's really not. The rock filled album showcases the bands incredible ability to write well-written songs that are firmly planted on their lyrics and their instrumentation. The band will see minimal commercial success with this album on the heels of the title track single, as well as the hype that has been building around the album over the past 8 years since they "officially" broke up. Now we know that the band just needed a break, and after very successful solo careers (which still will continue) they reconvened reenergize, older, wiser, and more understanding of the collaborative creative process. As always each band member serves as lead singer and has their own individual compositions showcased, but the band as a whole came together to deliver some incredible tracks that are both a reminder of the past and a outlook to the future of the band's sound and intent. "Not Messin'" and "Josephine" could have appeared on any previous release, but sound like they could only have been released by the band at this stage in their career. "Get Ready Boy" is a lyrical masterpiece by Chad, telling the simple story of leaf falling from a tree in such a profound way. "Feels So Good" is Pete's crown jewel from this collection, as it is all about the birth of his first child. Brad's stamp on the album is not only in his incredible drumming, but also in the song "Flag," an ode to Native American strife. The band goes all experimental on "We Hold A Gun," whose sound is a departure from most of Dispatch's signature sounds as if it may have been heavily influenced by Radiohead and psychedelic era Beatles. The boys are back, and from the looks and sounds of it, it seems like this reunion is more of a reconnection and will not be short lived. The band has much more to bring us both as a whole and from its individual members, and this is just the beginning (again)!