I never thought I could be moved so much by a basic indie/alternative rock record. The Forecast have outdone themselves with their latest release Everybody Left, which has left an incredible impression on me in the most unlikely fashion. On paper The Forecast is a pretty basic band – solid indie rock with dual male/female vocals. But as an entity they are so much more, and Everybody Left is proof.
The album’s opening title track is slow and soft, simple and easy. Yet somehow there is a certain heartfelt warmth created by some light strumming and Dustin Addis’ comforting vocals leaving absolutely nothing to be desired. This sympathetic track opens the record modestly and solemnly yet segues perfectly into the upbeat banger “Clear Eyes, Full Hearts” that officially kicks off The Forecast’s catchy side. This track is classic Forecast, featuring bouncy guitars, perfect harmonies between Addis and bassist Shannon Burns and just an overall fun summer vibe, which becomes the record’s clear intent.
The most prominent impression Everybody Left leaves is one of exuberance. Tracks like “Skyline,” “Figure It Out” and the aforementioned “Clear Eyes, Full Hearts” exude a summery atmosphere, no doubt due to the combination of very singable Justin Pierre-esque melodies and the blissful guitar licks of Kevin Ohls. This album begs to be played with the windows down while road-tripping with friends. Addis and Burns are at their best vocal-wise as they both take the helm brilliantly on certain tracks like the poppy “Take Me Down” and the calming “Skipping Stones” while effortlessly bouncing back and forth on others.
Though the vocals are at a high quality on Everybody Left, they are nothing if the lyrics bear no meaning. Luckily Addis’ lyrical charm is incredibly prevalent on this record. I’m a big fan of retrospective lyrics and when The Forecast refers back to old lyrics (“Sing It Out,” “Last Stand”), long-time fans will be filled with budding nostalgia, delivered subtly throughout Everybody Left.
As Everybody left closes as quietly and calmly as it opened one can’t help but feel incredibly satisfied by the effort and heart that is packed into this ten-track indie rock record. It is a blessing and an enormous pleasure to see veteran bands like this still making incredible music with the scene becoming flooded with nonsensical breakdowns and hundreds of songs about how shitty a band’s hometown is. I’m not sure how many years The Forecast have left in them, but here’s to hoping they can stick around to remind us how poppy indie rock should be done.