If Only In Dreams, and untameable debut album I Will Be, made you fall in love with Dee Dee and Dum Dum Girls, then upcoming 5 track EP, End of Daze, will push you over the edge; your love will become wholehearted obsession. With a more crisp and clear resonance, as opposed to previous lo/mid-fi 60s sounds characteristic of Dum Dum Girls, End of Daze marks a revolutionary development in the music of this quirky bunch of feminine rock idols. Similarly, it appears that thematically, the girls have grown. Songs of adolescent heart ache and teen despair such as belter 'Jail La La', have matured to the greater tackling of emotional issues, as in 'I Got Nothing'. This, undoubtedly owing to the recent death of front-woman Dee Dee's mother, means the EP does carry a mournful and melancholy air, and allows for a more soft-pace and thoughtful sound than previously produced by Dum Dum Girls.
The distorted opening guitar riffs and distant backing vocals of 'Season in Hell' work as a final reminder that this EP, though tinged with a dark melancholy, does not lack the fiery attitude that we love in the Dum Dum Girls. The bleak, honest and brooding lyricism featured in this track, arguably sum up the entirety of the EP and the pain it so sincerely conveys. Therefore, when the girls sing so colloquially, "It's been a season in Hell," we not only believe them, but join them in a 3 minute long, tenderly cathartic experience. End of Daze, title of the EP, is snatched from the well-crafted lyrics of this song, arguably the focal point of the record, and one has to consider its significance in what it represents for the Dum Dum Girls. The ambiguity of the title phrase could suggest both the ending of an era through the death of the lead singer's mother, or a greater sense of clarity and musical direction in the work of the band, presented in this EP. And though many noise pop groups, and indie-pop groups on the whole, may ooze poignancy and emotion, it’s rare for the tracks of such artists to be quite so hard-hitting and personal. Therefore, expect not only to enjoy the music, but to fully relate to the group's hardships.
As for the rest of End of Daze, arguably a build up to climactic final track, though no less captivating than it, are gems such as opening, lullaby like track, 'Mine Tonight', 'I Got Nothing' and pre-EP release, 'Lord Knows'. Slow, emotional and with a constant, rhythmic drum beat, the aforementioned song provides an inspired slice of the brilliance demonstrated in the rest of the EP. This is possibly Dum Dum Girls' best release to date, and will be a definite presence on my autumn playlist. Dum Dum Girls – not so dum after all.