Often when a band cleans up its sound they run the risk of becoming boring and losing the edge that results from a young band trying to figure out just what they want to say musically while still leaning heavy on their influences. Thankfully, for Los Angeles’ Dum Dum Girls, the progression from record to record has been one of lyrical growth that has shown us that lead singer/songwriter Dee Dee Penny is capable of great range and any inclinations we might have had to box this band into the category of garage rock and lo-fi have been proved wrong.
On their new EP, End of Daze, the band packs an honest, emotional musical statement into 5 songs and just under 18 minutes. Dee Dee has a maturity in her songwriting that makes the bands more recent work appealing on a much deeper level. While last years LP Only in Dreams dealt with similar themes of loss and love, End of Daze acts as a more transparent look into a songwriter who recently lost her mother to cancer. The track "Trees and Flowers"describes a weary world view in a moody tone that ultimately serves as a powerful unveiling of emotion.
The final two tracks on the EP are where Dee Dee really shows off how far she has come as a songwriter and downright impresses with her performance on "Lord Knows". The hypnotic melody coupled with the familiar chord progression make for an undeniably listenable song, but the vocal performance is what makes this track a downright classic. Instead of clouded by reverb, the singer's voice is allowed to shine and carry the song and for the first time is powerful enough to make the listener pay attention to her every word. The final track "Season in Hell" closes out the record with a hint of optimism. The line "Confession's not a cure, there's always darkness to endure/ On the path to be redeemed" shows an artist not just letting her emotions out through her music, but one actively working through them in an effort to move forward which is ultimately what this EP serves as, a sign of great growth for a band that has remained active and shows no sign of slowing down this progression.