Album of the Month – Worst Party Ever’s DARTLAND


Recorded and Produced by Tyler Floyd @ Floyd Audio

Hannah Sleath, Guest Contributor

As February rolls around, we must prepare ourselves for the last bits of the miserable North Dakota winter. What a better way to brace ourselves than with another Album of the Month?!

This month’s feature hails from Seattle-based band Worst Party Ever. This is actually their debut LP despite releasing music since 2014 with their self titled EP. Additionally, in 2016 they released a compilation titled Anthology (and one of my favorite albums of all time), boasting 21 songs in 53 minutes, and many singles sprinkled between releases. 

Dartland clocks in at only 23 minutes long, perfect for those with short attention spans (this is a self callout). The album has an enchanting, light and airy sound compared to other emo rock albums. It also has this D.I.Y. air to it despite the fantastic production value by producer Kyle Hoffer. There’s the classic heavy guitar use that Worst Party Ever fans have come to know and love. Songs often begin slow and paced almost-ballads and pick up to fast paced, exciting rock songs. 

This sound juxtaposes in a beautiful way with the bleary, depressed lyrics by Andy Schueneman. They have a classic, near pop punk, lyricism in their songs that sort of surprise you when put against the backing track. I absolutely adore the sound, and each song is so short it’s over before you even can process it, but the song hooks into your brain anyways, making you want to come back to the album again.

My favorite track on the record (and a more popular one of the tracklist) would easily be “Beautiful Out”. A slow strumming guitar and Schueneman’s vocal begin the track, with lyrics discussing numbness and staying inside (throwback to last month’s AOTM). This intro accelerates itself into a heavy guitar and drum pairing, continuing the twangy guitar chord progression established in the beginning. The melodramatic lyrics continue and speak heavily to anyone who’s experienced a depressive episode during the warmer months:

“And I know that it sucks

But it’s uniform now

And i don’t wanna go outside

But it’s beautiful out”

                   – Beautiful out by Worst Party Ever

This album feels like a summer depressive episode, with the lighter guitar, softer vocals, and numb lyrics. My only issue with the album is the, at times, repetitive nature of the chord progressions between songs. Despite this, I find myself coming back to this album again and again. 

This fifth wave emo album will be loved by anyone who’s a fan of Modern Baseball, Macseal, or American Football (I mean, come on, there’s a house on the cover). 

7 out of 10 Misos