The Submarines – Declare a New State!

Official Site of the Submarines
The Submarines @ MySpace

The Inside Pulse:
The Submarines are :
John Dragonetti (Jack Drag) and Blake Hazard

Due to exposure on TV and in major motion pictures, indie-rock has taken a turn toward the mainstream again because the influences of musicians such as: Bright Eyes, Death Cab for Cutie and Iron & Wine. The popularity of many of the most successful acts is simple: play melodies that people can hum at work sonically textured by lyrics they can relate to while touring incessantly and hope that “word of mouth” marketing works. This stylish experiment, Declare a New State!, is destined to find itself wrapped in the fabric of adolescent and/or hipster subculture.

Maybe it is fate, not loneliness, that compels us all to reach out and find a “perfect match.” This subtle guidance leads to moments we, as humans, might observe as happenstance. The Submarines are lead by the true life husband-and-wife tandem Jack Drag and Blake Hazard (great-granddaughter of F. Scott Fitzgerald,) a duo still very much enamored with the dramatic concept of love, who realized space was needed to fix a failing relationship. Hazard and Drag met on the road, however, relocating from Boston to L.A. together saw them break up on the eve of the 2004 California presidential primary, an event that eventually inspired the song “Vote.”

The time apart allowed them both to see that creatively (“Brighter Discontent”) and personally they were each other’s perfect match, which is apropos, as they are so in tune with one another, the genuine lyrical give-and-take helps move their colorful tale forward to a palatable ending.

The album was never meant to see the light of day. Originally, it was a gift for their friends, a “thank you” for the love and support. One of those friends eventually mixed the sessions for them as a wedding gift.

Most newlyweds get a blender or fine china. This is a sonic gravy boat for us all, a rare, undiscovered treat.

Positives:

Saccharine sweet and fluffy soft, this album is for the discerning listener. Nothing is forced or contrived, and the recipe is one that everyone can enjoy. “Peace and Hate” sums up the feelings of two people who truly were meant to be together, but life got in the way: “I should be gone/cast away/but still I’d love you/through all peace and hate.

Negatives:

Wistful, gentle songs are not for everyone. If you aren’t a fan of Rilo Kiley or Teenage Fanclub, you won’t enjoy this experience. Try it anyway…it’s a bittersweet and evocative piece, well worth the effort. Just don’t throw this on your iPod and expect to have a killer workout.

Cross-breed:

The Postal Service as fronted by Neko Case and Sam Beam. Susanna Hoffs and Blake Sennett leading Wilco.

Reason to buy:

You need a soundtrack to your heartbreak, but need to keep a smile on your face out of fear that the sun will make you weep. Stay inside and listen to this, assured that after the heartache has gone, this is still a great album.