The new Neck Deep record All Distortions Are Intentional is nothing short of pure honesty, blunt emotions in every day relationships, and internal feelings that every one of us have experienced. We have always felt that Neck Deep records are extremely relatable, but we feel like this new release just sinks into your very core and how people think about themselves as well as others.
What is so special and different about this record is that the guys have created a conceptual storyline with issues scoping over existential crisis, disconnection, finding relationships and working through independence and dependence in those relationships. All Distortions Are Intentional follows the story of a loner named Jett, who lives in a place called Sonderland, the name of the “town” coming from the words “Wonderland” and “Sonder”. When listening to this record you will feel that what they have created in Sonderland really is located and indwelling in all of us. We all wonder and want to hope and desire for things and live our best lives and have a natural selfish motive in life. However, we also experience moments (whether frequent or infrequent) of feeling Sonder- having the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own, with their own ambitions and worries.
As Ben Barlow (vocals) put it, “It’s that strange existential realization that you are not the entire world…Everyone around you feels and lives the same way that you do. You’re just an extra in their story.”
Like many of us, Jett feels confused about his purpose and is stuck in a state of self-seeking a prophecy he may never fulfill on his own due to self-doubt and grim ambition. But then comes Alice to shake everything up for him. For once, he realizes he has met someone that puts him at ease that he can “fall into”.
As their story continues the record covers both sides of their thoughts including songs like “Lowlife” where it appears Alice calls Jett out on what she sees as his self-absorbed behavior by calling him, “Mr. I’m So Important”.
Approaching the latter half of the album, “Empty House” is probably one of our favorites in this story. There is something so honest and upfront about this song and what true loneliness feels like- which is something we have all gotten a spoonful of. Sometimes when you go from a state of euphoria to emptiness it’s as if the world has come to an end. Everything is a shock. You don’t know when things will get better or if they will. Ever. You are completely consumed in your thoughts again with no one to balance you out. The light that you had in your tunnel is either far away or gone. While this song has a more mellow tone to it compared to the upbeat tracks “Fall” and “When You Know”, we feel the tone they chose for it couldn’t be more perfect. It’s mellow with a sense of restlessness. It is truly our favorite.
This new record has brought a lot to the table thanks to these amazing musicians and the help of the well-renowned A-List producer, Matt Squire (Panic! At The Disco, Underoath, Ariana Grande, One Direction, All Time Low)! The band also joined forces with Ben Barlow’s brother Seb Barlow who helped mix this album for them and ended up becoming a bassist for them by the end of this project!
We feel the band was really able to sit and reflect and get their best work out by recording at a famous residential studio in Monnow Valley, in the beautiful and remote Wye Valley in the heart of the band’s native Wales. We feel the decision to make the album at home played a huge role in how this record turned out. Besides, who doesn’t want to write and work creatively in a space that was also worked in by the greats like Queen, Led Zeppelin, and Joss Stone?!
Neck Deep has come to a new level since their Rain In July days in 2012. These guys are ready to keep taking large stages and wow-ing audiences world-wide. After all, they were announced as the “Best Live Band” at the Alternative Press Music Awards!
You guys…getting this album on the release date is a MUST. Take the time and listen to it in it’s entirety so you can really hear the story of Jett and Alice. We guarantee you will be pleased.
The new album, All Distortions Are Intentional will feature 12 new tracks including:
- Telling Stories
- When You Know
- Sick Joke
- What Took You So Long?
- Empty House
- Little Dove
- I Revolve (Around You)
- Pushing Daisies
Be sure to grab the CD in stores starting this Friday, July 24th!