Dashboard Confessional frontman Chris Carabba has an understandable reputation as the father of contemporary emo, which he most likely earned by penning weepy, whiny songs about how much girls have messed him up. Listening to his albums is generally like flipping through the diary of a depressed 14-year-old boy, and that doesn't always make for the most uplifting music. On Dashboard Confessional's latest release, Dusk and Summer, however, something magical happened: Maturity began to show itself, and Dashboard's music became something that older, less mopey fans could get into. Live, in particular, Carabba and his band are not so weary as they have often sounded on CD. The onstage performance is more rock-driven, chock full of sing-along choruses, and finally, perhaps not so deserving of the emo label. It's just too bad Counting Crows singer Adam Duritz won't be at the show to reprise his guest appearance on the new record.
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