On Normal, Charleston trio Run Dan Run creates an album that embodies elements of indie rock with a vengeance. The group’s sophomore release may draw heavy comparisons to the work of Broken Social Scene, but it manages to harness some of its own creativity.
From the swells of intricate sounds — including delicate female backing vocals and traces of full-bodied brass instruments — to thumping beats and slow intros, Run Dan Run layers each track onto the next, eventually churning out a typical, yet unpredictable indie-rock album.
But that’s not to say Run Dan Run lacks originality. The first track, “Lovesick Animal,” is a strong launch into the album and the obvious standout. Dan McCurry’s hazy vocals are accompanied by brass instrumentation, and the song is upbeat and infectious. Overall, Normal’s variety of instrumentation in songs is evident from beginning to end: It starts off with a bang yet still has the capacity to tone things down.
Run Dan Run
Dive verdict: 2.5 of 5 stars
At certain points, songs drag on a little too long, especially when several of them surpass the five-minute mark. Although McCurry’s lyrics are honest and personal, they often lack a dynamic flow. Several songs are based heavily on the repetition of a few lyrics. While Normal has some songs that will please, overall it can feel weighted.
Run Dan Run has created an album that simultaneously sprints and drags through layers of danceable, whimsical sound. Despite its lengthiness, Normal promises a few thumping gems and demonstrates there is still room to grow.