Shannon and the Clams
Gone By The Dawn
Every time I’ve played Shannon and the Clams’ music around someone new to their sound, the immediate response is, “I need this right now” or “This is bitchin’”. Whether you love surf rock, garage rock, punk rock or doo wop, the Clams deliver their high-energy, trashy and ridiculously fun take on it all with every album. On their fourth album, the Clams manage to make themselves the main focus of their songs, and the result feels real.
Gone By The Dawn is an admittedly more sentimental affair documenting the coming and going of two of the band member’s romantic relationships. The album title and lead single “Corvette” are tools to make us feel the heartache of reliving past romances that we knew would end too soon, but still linger in our minds as unfinished business.
What's most interesting about this highly personal album is its soundtrack, which sounds like SpongeBob underwater-rock. It's cartoonish, strange and irresistible. “I Will Miss the Jasmine” is an underwater symphony with synths, organs and vibrating riffs that sound like singing clams at the bottom of the ocean. “How Long” is a western ballad that’s beautifully produced with glistening background whistle’s and one of (lead singer) Shannon Shaw’s most impressive vocal performances ever. From start to finish, there’s plenty to feel and hear on this album, and the layers of reverberating guitars and synths backing Shaw’s voice make the album a technically-interesting listen as well as a fun one. With better production than ever, provided by Sonny Smith of Sonny and the Sunsets, Gone By The Dawn allows us to know the Clams, rather than just adore them, and further cements their legacy as vintage-rock greats.
You can pick up a physical copy here.