Head here to submit your own review of this album.

It does not take an extraordinary amount of imagination to get an idea of what a band named Teen Daze will sound like. This seemed especially easy after having listened to the five-year progression of this project, which serves as an alias for the 29-year-old Jamison from British Columbia. Coming to prominence at the dawn of chillwave's moment in the sun in 2010, the song 'Let's Fall Asleep Together' still captures the spirit of that movement with breezy ease. And the things that made that track such a delight, including reverb-laden vocals pressed into the back of the mix and terrific lo-fi atmospherics, continued for some time. But now, seemingly in an effort to buck convention, Teen Daze has put forth his first clean, studio-polished recording in the form of Morning World.

At the album's outset, marked by a stirring arrangement of strings and a characteristically sunny guitar and synth combo, nothing will likely seem amiss. If anything, the knack that Jamison clearly has for writing some tremendously beautiful pieces of music seems to be being conveyed more clearly than ever thanks to the clean recording and mixing provided by John Vanderslice at his all-analog Tiny Telephone studio in San Francisco. But upon the entrance of Jamison's voice just shy of two minutes into the record's first track, 'Valley of Gardens,' the difference between Morning World and previous recordings becomes striking.

Rather than hiding in the background behind piles of reverb, which oftentimes did serve an atmospheric purpose as on 2011's 'The Harvest', Jamison's voice finds itself squarely at the front of the mix. The previously extensive effort to figure out each track's lyrics is no more. Instead, this is by far the most direct Teen Daze release yet. But just because his voice is more present, more tangible than ever, does that make Morning World his most intimate creation?

The answer is a firm no. The instrumentals do occasionally find a certain beauty and the unobstructed vocal performance certainly renders an air of vulnerability. Yet, the studio gleam placed upon this record feels out of place. Moving from the loneliness of 2011's A Silent Planet to the bubbly utopia presented in 2012's All Of Us, Together was a stirring evolution that took place in a lo-fi prism that allowed for listeners to feel a greater connection with the kaleidoscope of emotions attempting to be conveyed by Teen Daze.

Morning World, however, puts everyone else at a distance, even as the lyrics throughout the record attempt to depict the symbiotic relationship that can exist between two human beings. It makes for a contradiction that does not seem purposeful.

There are a few moments here that make for excellent summertime listening. The dreamscape of the title track, the rain-on-asphalt smells evoked by the appropriately titled 'Post Storm' and the tinny piano of 'Life In The Sea' all make for memorable turns, proving that Teen Daze still has the ability to capture a mood as well as anyone. But the decision to take the recording process away from the tender limitations of the bedroom would seem to have no paid off for Jamison. No major leaps have been made and no showstoppers have been added. An effort to buck convention make have actually just made the project slide a few steps backwards.

This is the place you'll find reviews from 405 Readers. To join in, head here.