(photo by Steven Taylor)
Frontman BRIAN DALES takes us track by track on the SUMMER SET’s forthcoming album, Everything’s Fine. The album can be pre-ordered today, June 14, via iTunes, and is out everywhere on July 19. Also, listen to an exclusive stream of the new song, “Someone Like You.”
“About A Girl”
The first song on the record. I'd like to consider it an open invitation to the story of Everything's Fine. With a 12-string acoustic guitar and gorgeous string arrangement, this opening ballad is one of the most honest songs we've ever written about a girl that “I wrote about before.” I think it sets a precedent for what the entire record is going to be about.
“When We Were Young”
Maybe my favorite song we've ever written. I remember listening to a ton of Bruce Springsteen and really wanting to write a rock anthem, reminiscent of the soundtrack to an ‘80s John Hughes movie. It's a tale as old as time, about the trials and tribulations of being a young adult and falling in love for the first time.
“Someone Like You”
The first single off Everything's Fine. It's about finding the flaws in someone, but falling in love with them anyway. Someone who's “perfectly imperfect.” Written with our friend Mike Daly from the band Whiskeytown, “Someone Like You” is the perfect windows-down summer jam, and I think it’s the best representation of what the Summer Set is all about.
“Back To The Start”
One of the most personal songs for me. This song is about a very real break-up I went through the past few years and the chase to try and get them back. It's about never giving up on someone you love. It's perfectly placed in the story this album encompasses. It's one of my favorite [performances] and some of the most impressive production John Fields did on the album.
“Must Be The Music”
It's a party anthem. Sort of this, “I don't care if I'm heartbroken, I'm gonna drink ‘til the sun comes up, hit on every girl that walks, and play my music loud.” It's one of the most fun songs on the album, and ultimately we just want people to dance and have a good time. Listen closely in the second verse—it also includes the only vocal our guitarist Josh Montgomery has ever recorded (and hopefully ever will).
“Thick As Thieves”
This song was recorded three different ways before we settled on this version. A quirky little song about two unconventional lovers on the run, because society doesn't want them to be together. Kind of a modern spin on Romeo and Juliet. Fully equipped with a ukulele, string section, gang vocals, and even train tracks and police sirens, this crazy little number will hopefully have you singing or dancing for days. Definitely one of our favorites.
Probably the only real heavy rock song the Summer Set has ever recorded. Another really personal song for me, about a girl who left me for one of my close friends. A guy who used her just so he could “dress her up and show her off.” Fun fact, Jess [Bowen, drums] and Stephen [Gomez, bass] had to take me out the night before, get me real drunk and make sure I didn't sleep, so I would sound like a man and be able to scream those parts of the vocal.
A romantic acoustic song about seeing all the of the most beautiful wonders of the world, but realizing that none of them matter because you've never loved anything in your whole life the way you love this girl.
The last song written and recorded for the album, and probably the most similar to our first album, Love Like This. I think it really helps tie the album together lyrically in the sense that it's about waking up in the morning and finally being ready to move on. It's the whole mantra that “everything's fine.”
“Love To You”
A little ukulele ditty with a huge beat, packed with layers of Beach Boys-style background vocals. Also one of the last songs written for the record. I think once we “went to the island” with “Someone Like You” and “Thick As Thieves,” it was hard for us to leave. This song is either a personal song about trying to maintain a friendship with a girl I've been in love with, or it's about my dog. I'll let you decide.
“Don't Let Me Go”
Written on the piano with our friend Paul Doucette from Matchbox 20. This song almost wasn't gonna be on the record, but I'm glad it made the cut. It's an emotional ballad about feeling alone in a crowded room. I remember coming home after a year on the road and seeing old friends and thinking everyone had changed. I slowly realized it wasn't them who had changed, it was me. They were, in fact, still exactly the same. It's about falling apart and hoping someone will be there to catch you. I love the way it builds up in the bridge, and you feel as if something auspicious is about to happen, only to find that the payoff is this a cappella choir singing, “Is it gone, gone, will it ever come back?”