There’s something incredibly special about records you can listen to repeatedly and still draw new meanings from. Like a gift that keeps on giving, Mexico City’s third album When The Day Goes Dark is one such record, featuring 11 songs that each tell a story and impart gems of wisdom.
Seven years in the making, When The Day Goes Dark was worth the wait. It’s a country-rock inspired record that drummer Ben Carstens describes as “quieter” than the band’s previous efforts (2006’s Black Comedy and 2009’s Brown Bird). The heartfelt lyrics on this album take centre stage, with the acoustic instruments adding to the raw and personal ambience of each song.
While the record explores a range of profound issues including racism, abandonment and general suburban discontent, there are four songs in particular, that stand out for their craft and lyrical content. The first is catchy lead single Down At The Beach. Inspired by the 2005 Cronulla Riots, Down At The Beach comments on the atrocities of racism in modern day Australia.
Shadow Of A Doubt and title track When The Day Goes Dark are two more upbeat favourites, with the latter told from the perspective of a man wishing he could live another man’s life. Most stunning of all though is the stripped back ballad Easy Grace – a poignant ode to a girl who left an unloving home to make it on her own. With gentle vocals and minimal accompaniment Easy Grace is like a sombre but beautiful lullaby for adults.
Overall, Mexico City’s When The Day Goes Dark has the lyrical finesse of Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen, and will appeal to fans of both artists along with those of John Mellencamp, Nick Cave and Neil Young. Be it through upbeat tunes or mellow laments, this record conveys meaningful messages and is one you should definitely play on repeat!