Review: You, Me, and Everyone We Know, ‘Dogged’
You, Me, and Everyone We Know is a band that will always hold a special place in my heart. I’ve been a fan of this band through almost every one of it’s incarnations. I’ve seen countless musicians back Ben Liebsch on his journey to find himself through music. Some of these shifts have been peaceful, and some of them have been disastrous. I’ve enjoyed them all, and I’d be lying if I said that being able to see this in action hasn’t been one of the most intriguing, and musically satisfying things I’ve been able to witness.
I came to appreciate YMAEWK right around the time ‘So Young, So Insane’ was released, and I’ve been on board ever since. This band was there for me at a time where I didn’t feel like I could turn to people. Spending the majority of my sophomore year of high school in hospital rooms were always eased when I knew that I could turn to this band on my Zune. Yeah, I was that kid. I’ve seen every record as a triumph, and the one release they had on Topshelf Records felt like a pre-cursor to the aforementioned devastating break up.
We witnessed a comeback of sorts with ‘A Great Big Hole’ and ‘I Wish More People Gave A Shit,’ but it’s not until right now, with the release of ‘Dogged’ that I can confidently say that You, Me, and Everyone are back and in their prime. These six songs are easily the best that Liebsch has ever written. They offer moments of self-reflection and paint a very vivid future for You, Me, and Everyone We Know as a band. To the point that I’m starting to wonder if Ben is aware of the phoenix-like attributes this band carries as one of it’s most distinguishable traits. I truly love watching this band rise from the ashes.
‘Dogged’ opens up with “Raise Them Bones” which sort of pays homage to the phoenix comparison I just made. The song is just barely a minute long, but it’s hard not to get hyped listening to it. Once you get to hear Liebsch sing “So if you’re sitting up/holding your life’s work in your hands/and they’re saying give it up/every hair-brained scheme and plan” it’s all over. That will be the moment when you can finally sigh in relief. They’re back…and they’re ready.
My two favorites from the record are “I’d Rather Be Sleeping” and “Brooks Was Here.” The former of the was released as the second single from ‘Dogged’ much to my delight. This is one of the most driving songs on the record. Hell, “I’d Rather Be Sleeping” might just be the best song Liebsch has ever written. Every verse, chorus, bridge is just incredible in this track. The first line of the song talks about having dessert for dinner, and that’s exactly what this feels like. Also, how many other people could flawlessly work the name Mephistopheles into a song lyric? Come one now.
I’ve been in love with “Brooks Was Here” from the second I heard it. The chorus feels so self deprecating and defeated, but it’s presented with such life. I’ve been singing these songs for a couple months now, and this is one I always find myself humming. The melody for that chorus is an earworm and will wiggle it’s way into your brain frighteningly fast. Contrary to the final line in the song, I’m going to have to say that if it’s all in my head don’t let me out.
I meant what I said when I claimed that ‘Dogged’ was a collection of Liebsch’s best work. I’ve always been a fan of this band, and I can honestly say that this EP feels like a breath of fresh air for the band. Things took a turn after their debut album came out, and I’ve truly loved watching Ben make his way here through the last two EP’s. Fans and newcomers alike are in for a very special treat this year. You, Me, and Everyone We Know is back, and they are at the top of their game. Showing, once again, why this is a band that you should never write off.
‘Dogged’ may only be an EP, but it’s got EP of the year in the bag as far as I’m concerned. 5/5