The 2001 EP Mood Swings is the first release by the megagroup DC4. Duncan brothers Jeff, Matt, and Shawn team up with Hyland Church, combining their own tastes and producing their own sound. Band members are veteran musicians, and already know their way around a stage because of previous band associations.
My expectations are always high when it comes to super groups since they already know what to do and how to do it. So does DC4 make the grade? Let’s find out!
Containing five songs, the EP actually packs quite a punch. “I Belong” (song 1) and “Black Picket Fence” (song 4) are solid rock songs with clear punk influences. Both are upbeat with great guitar solos and drummer, Shawn, really showcases his talent on these two. Jeff nails it on the vocals, as his voice is the perfect pitch. “Pandora’s Cure” (song 5) leans more toward the alternative rock side and is an ideal choice for the final song. Upon its ending I was left wanting more (in a good way), which is something every band should hope to accomplish.
The longest song on the EP – we all know by now how much I enjoy the long ones – is song 3, entitled “Paper Dolls”. It is 5:46 and is the closest thing to a ballad on the EP. However, while it contains ballad-esque elements (including a screaming guitar solo), I am still unable to classify it as a full-fledged ballad for some reason. Jeff’s tone is yet again right on point; I especially like how he sings the lines: “… sour grapes grow on vines that suffocate; here in this garden, our season came too late… “. All around excellent song that I can safely say is one of my favorites, the other favorite being “Naïve Bree” (song 2).
Where do I even start with this one? If I were asked to name my top twenty favorite rock songs to come out after the year 1995 “Naïve Bree” would be one of them. It’s the classic story of a good girl who fell in with the wrong crowd while trying to find herself and DC4 tells it perfectly. While consistently giving great vocals throughout the entire EP, Jeff really shines on this song. He has amazing vocal range and displays some of that here very well. The backing vocals are just as significant as the lead in this particular song; without them I don’t feel it would have made as much of an impact.
So there you have it. DC4 has nailed it as far as first releases go. Is this EP “Anna’s iPod Approved”? Absolutely! I have no problem listening to every song on it repeatedly. You can get this EP for yourself at iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/mood-swings-feat.-jeff-duncan/id488095076.