I first met piano wizard Dave Yaden when he was playing with Josh Kelley. We met online somewhere, MySpace maybe, and I finally got to meet him in person at the Music Mill. We stayed close after that, and I ended up booking him several shows in Indianapolis over the years. He ran with guys like Curtis People and Keaton Simons, and I always got along with those guys. I stopped doing freelance booking, but we have stayed in touch on Facebook and Twitter.
Anyway, Dave sent me an email the other day asking if I would be interested in reviewing his new EP. He is working with Candace Devine and they are producing some incredible tunes together. I don’t usually like writing album reviews, but it means a lot for Dave (maybe I should start calling him David) to ask me. There are only five songs on this EP, but I wanted to take a look at each one and explain what I am hearing.
Trouble – 3:52
I am not sure of the order of these songs, but this would be a great way to kick things off. The first track (the first track I am listening to) is called Trouble. Candace starts off by explaining what trouble means to her, then David comes in and gives his two cents.
After the two have explained what trouble means to them, they start singing together. Well, they start yelling together. Having only heard one track, I can see these two just crushing it live. Their energy and passion for music is what makes this music work. I can even see these two singing gospel… up there jumping around and preaching to a church full of people.
“I got trouble, and it feels so good to me.”
I Wanna Know – 3:13
This song will sound so much better come October. It is creepy, and has some dark sounds right out of the gate. One thing I have always liked about Dave is his ability to write lyrics. I don’t know who wrote the lyrics for this EP, but I bet he had a hand in them.
When Devine starts to sing, I am almost floored by her vocals. She has so much energy, and it just pushes through the speakers. Not sure who did the guitar parts on this album, but they are extremely professional and make this track come full circle.
“I wanna know why you whisper when you’re talking on the phone.”
Faith – 3:13
Is it weird that two tracks in a row are 3:13? This is a cover, and I usually dislike covers because bands rarely pull them off. Well… David and Devine pull it off! At first, I didn’t even realize this was a cover. Do you remember who originally did this song?
I wonder why they decided to cover this song. Maybe I should interview them and ask them that! Covers like this are what can complete a live performance. I actually saw Dave play with Devine at Birdy’s Bar & Grill, but I am not sure how far along they were into this project. Listening to this brings me back to that smoky club watching Dave stand and bang on the keys.
“Before this river becomes an ocean, before you throw my heart back on the floor.”
Take Another Shot – 2:24
This is hands down my favorite song on the EP. I am not sure what it is… maybe the clapping, but I can’t help but think of the movie O Brother, Where Art Thou. Maybe it’s the clapping.
Lyrics are what will make these two a success. Dave is a storyteller, and that is what this song is. That is what this EP is. One story after another, just told in song.
“So throw your worries to the wind, let the music in.”
It’s Alright – 2:59
This song is fun. I dare you to listen to this song and not move a little. I am tapping my foot and bobbing my head seconds in. This is the last song, but the power in the vocals is as strong as the first. I have heard Dave sing time and time again, but this is some of the best I have heard from him.
Knowing Candace, I never thought she had this much soul. The power in her vocals and the sound that is coming from her lips is just incredible. By the time this song is over, I am standing up clapping my hands and hitting replay so I can learn the lyrics.
“Long as you’re by my side.”
Every song on this album is solid. I want more than five tracks. The production is spot on, too. I am not sure who produced this, but I am blown away. I don’t say that because I am friends with Dave… I say that because I love this sound, I love their energy, and I know good music when I hear it.
Head over to iTunes and grab a copy so you can hear what I am talking about. Dave and Devine are new to the scene, but I have a feeling with a look and a sound like this, they won’t be going away any time soon.