Post-hardcore behemoths, La Dispute have released their first album in four years. Panorama is the first album La Dispute is releasing through Epitaph Records. This 10 track LP marks their first release on a major label, with production by Will Yip.
Hailing from Grand Rapids, MI- about 160 miles from Detroit, La Dispute has brought an emotional and distinctly Michigan sound to the scene since 2004. Recently, the band celebrated a decade of their debut, Somewhere at the Bottom of the River Between Vega and Altair (2008. No Sleep Records). This extraordinarily profound record launched La Dispute’s popularity into areas outside of Michigan.
Their latest LP may be their best work yet, with a different production style, that does more to showcase Dreyer’s vocals. The album begins with the song, “Rose Quartz”, introducing the LP with a gentle push, this introduction is instrumental, with hints of electronica influence. The LP continues with “Fulton Street I”, a deafening track, it’s arrangement is fueled by lingering chords and a steady bone crushing drum beat. “Fulton Street I” was released on December 4, as the first single off the LP through NPR’s “All Songs Considered”.
Longtime fans might compare the raw energy to their track “King Park” (2011) (you may remember this song by its soul-crushing lyrics “can I still get into heaven if I kill myself?” Misquoted for a few years on Tumblr). Vocally, this LP is a roller coaster, with a ferocity and innate tenderness that is both cathartic and exciting. Will Yip’s production focuses on perfecting the balance between the crescendos and near whispers of Dreyer’s vocals. As usual, there is a singular track dedicated to home, “ In Northern Michigan”, which us natives would refer to as simply “up north”. The track tells the story about a trip up north during the fall, the lyrics focus heavily on the scenery. Reading almost like a novel, the narrative gives a picture of the natural world and its connection to the emotions between the pair in the song.
Clocking in at 41 minutes, Panorama stands as a testament to the growth and talent of La Dispute. It is a cohesive piece of work that builds off their previous work and reminds us that post-hardcore is far from dead.