On September 27th Zach Deputy released his new album Another Day to an anxiously awaiting and fully buffered audience. His most recent EP Into the Morning… was meant to get people excited for this release, as he told me a couple of months ago, and in sharing 4 of it’s 7 tracks with Another Day, it surely did the job.
At his CD release party, Deputy admitted to starting the project with the intention of doing a dance-funk-party record more along the lines of 2009’s Sunshine, but he kept it mellow to open the album. “Happy Graduation” was offered as a free download right around the end of May (wonder why…) and while it’s a beautiful song, it feels vaguely like an attempt to immortalize a song a la Vitamin C circa 1999.
“Remember” is the first taste listeners get of Deputy’s dance-able side, but stays very much in line with the lovey-dovey theme of the album. “Sweet Rene” is a trick because it starts off in a calmer vein and builds to a high-energy jaunt featuring soulful background singers and Deputy hitting the high notes.
The fourth song is finally the Deputy beast that rears its head in a live setting. “Make It Right” brings out the funky beats that almost force you to bob your head and clap along. It’s not until this track that I really believed what he said to me about this album two months before it came out- “It’s definitely going to open the window to a completely different audience without alienating the audience I already have.”
“Thoughts of Yesterday” slows it down again, but in a much more Deputy fashion by keeping the funk and reggae rhythms anchoring the sound. It becomes a happy, hopeful message rather than the rather saddening beginning which provides an interesting transition to the most melancholy ballad on the album, “You Don’t Even Love That Girl.” I think this song may have been what Deputy meant when, at his first CD release show, he confessed that these songs are what he plays at home to himself, and this one must have a special place in his heart because he played it in both sets that night.
The title track summarizes the apparent theme of the album, keeping with the slower tempos, the ballad structure, and serves as the best display of Deputy’s vocal talents and range. Though this could easily be a lullaby for his young daughter, it’s “Sleep” that was actually written to serve that purpose.
The only song to follow typical jam band standards and exceed 5 minutes is the second to last, “Tagalong,” and though Deputy may be categorized in this genre, he does not attempt to make any sort of typical jam band album. And while this track may meet that expectation time-wise, musically it’s bluesy, jazz-club style ditty with an inexplicable minute of silence before a brief few riffs and wails at the end.
The closing track ironically served as the opening track on the previous EP and closes the album on an up-beat, reggae, danceable, Zach Deputy style classic.