Derrick Davis – Anti-Social

Urbane poetry is met with sultry grooves and fierce harmonies in the smashing songcraft contained on Derrick Davis’ latest effort Anti-Social. Davis gets in touch with his inner bluesman in “Blow Song,” plays the part of an old fashioned folk troubadour in “Clark Kent,” bends jazz rhythm with a rollicking pop hook in “Hunter,” “Best I Can” and “Light It Up,” and even leaves enough room to pummel us with alternative rock might in “End of Days” and “All I Need to Know,” all of which represent songwriting highpoints of his career. Derrick Davis might be an underground heartthrob today, but this LP stands to make him a household name tomorrow.

Best I Can,” “Life of the Party” and “Clark Kent” are rooted in a minimalist approach to composing, while “Light It Up,” “All I Need to Know” and “Carry Me” sport a more direct framework that makes them just a bit more streamlined and radio-friendly than the other songs are. Don’t get me wrong – every one of these tracks would make a nice addition to any left of the dial playlist, but some of them feature a slightly more straightforward execution. Davis is really defining his sound on this album, and to my delight, refusing to give up his indie street cred while doing so.

There’s no rigidity in the drumming that drives “Blow Song,” “Hunter,” and “Livin,” and if you ask me, it’s some of the most fluid percussion that I’ve heard in a rock record made post-2015. The beats are smooth, alluring, and emphasize the textures in the melody wonderfully. “Light It Up” and “Livin” sway with such a heavy bottom-end that resisting the urge to swing along with them is next to impossible, and even though “End of Days” has a more elegiac harmony, its supple percussive support is as essential to its appeal as the ethereal string play in its chorus is.

Anti-Social has a spotless production quality that isn’t even beholden to the notion of unwanted feedback. In an attempt to give us the full scope of his incredible tonality, Davis didn’t include any unnecessary augmentations of these songs – something that the majority of his peers should really try doing sometime.

Were they not given such a textured equalization, I don’t know if tracks like “Clark Kent” or “Blow Song” would be as entrancing as they are in this perfectly-adjusted state we find them in here. Davis is devoted to his medium, and you can tell that just by taking one cursory look at any of these masterfully produced songs.

We’re slated to see a ton of really good music released this year, and I must say that Anti-Social is among the very finest due out this month. Derrick Davis pulls out all the stops in this LP and brings us into his world via his ensnaring vocal attack and sublimely relatable lyrics, and for my money, it doesn’t get much better than what he lays down in the first four tracks here alone. This is his most robust record so far, and I encourage those who appreciate legit indie rock to give it a spin upon its release.

If you liked the preview from Anti-Social, make sure to visit Derrick Davis’ official website by clicking here. Give him a like on Facebook by clicking here & a follow on Twitter by clicking here. Lastly make sure to pick up a copy of Anti-Social by clicking here.

Eric Jarvis

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