Centered around failure and a fall from grace, Dogs At Large’s “All Day” inspires us to find ways of moving on and always seeing the beauty in life.
I think people should embrace failure or recognize when they’ve failed more often so they can move on or see the beauty of life in [other] ways…
Life moves in only one direction; there’s no going backward, so we might as well move forward no matter what. When hardship strikes, we push ourselves. When it feels like we’re reliving Job’s sorry tale, we persevere. When one door closes, we open another. Moving on takes time; it requires humility, open-mindedness, a willingness to change, and a keen sense of self. Centered around failure and a fall from grace, Dogs At Large’s new song “All Day” inspires us to find ways of moving on and always seeing the beauty in life.
Getting fucked up all day
Shouting at a TV til the dawn
They never dial your number anymore
Just a shadow of a former faun
Made of leather, made of grease
Made of the spit inside an envelope crease
You would open inside your room
Inside a trailer that you turned into a tomb
You didn’t work hard enough
Stream: “All Day” – Dogs At Large
Atwood Magazine is proud to be premiering “All Day,” the lead single off Dogs at Large’s forthcoming sophomore album Delusions of Paradise (out March 1st 2019 via Fine Prints). The Chicago-based band/collective of musicians led by Sam Pirruccello, Dogs at Large craft a wondrous psychedelic Americana sound that manages to make listeners feel at home by the fire, no matter the circumstances. Pirruccello has said his diagnosis with a mood disorder and a “feeling of general despair” influenced Delusions of Paradise, yet somehow his music manages to shine resiliently – almost in spite of the surrounding darkness.
“Getting fucked up all day, shouting at a TV til the dawn,” sings the bandleader as “All Day” begins. Mellow piano and a mournful slide guitar imbue the soundscape with a moody haze that somehow feels stuck halfway between darkness and light; meanwhile, Pirruccello continues to set a sorrowful scene of a person wiling away their remaining time, simply waiting for the inevitable – having given up on life, and unwilling to progress beyond their failures or ineptitudes.
Drive like a demon all night
Through the winding hills that bring you home
Finally the sign is out of sight
That apocalyptic glow of emptiness
In the gutter, on the street
Inside a rotten piece of buffalo meat
California, here I come
Hear me briefly as I beat my drum
Because I didn’t work hard enough
“All Day is a song about failure – a perceived or real fall from grace that happens gradually and over time,” Pirruccello tells Atwood Magazine. “It’s a composite character sketch: I kind of had the idea of a down and out Hollywood actor in mind, or the idea of someone who moves to a big city to seek fame and fortune but realizes that they aren’t going to make it.”
“All Day” presents a purposeful juxtaposition between two ends of a spectrum. “I wanted the music to contrast with the negativity of the song lyrics, I wanted it to sound warm and inviting and embracing. I think it’s a nice contrast because I think people should embrace failure or recognize when they’ve failed more often so they can move on or see the beauty of life in ways other than seeking external social validation or financial success. It’s also a song about the societal myth that people who don’t make it just aren’t working hard enough, which I think is total bullshit. Hard work is a large part of success but there’s also inherent talent, random chance, race, class, economics, trends etc. The song was originally all electric and a little quicker but we eventually added piano and acoustic guitar to the mix to allow it to breathe a little more and feel warmer. I wanted that Laurel Canyon vibe on this one a little bit with the steel and piano working together to provide some counterpoint to the vocal lines while the electric guitar is basically either playing riffs or acting as a kind of background texture.”
“All Day” hits its peak in a shining admission:
I’ve come so far to be let down again
These words ring out with acceptance, grief, fear, uncertainty, but more than anything else, resolve: Pirruccello inspires a sense of calm determination in a song that, up until this point, has been but a series of glances in the rearview mirror. Just as Dogs at Large come to their firm, yet uneasy ending, the mood softens and the weight lifts. As the band’s PR so eloquently writes, “It makes embracing failure feel like a warm hug from an old friend.” I wish those were my words, but they ring true nevertheless.
If this is what we are to expect from Delusions of Paradise, then it will surely be one very worthwhile dream. Stream Dogs At Large’s “All Day” exclusively on Atwood Magazine, and stay tuned for more off Delusions of Paradise in advance of its March 2019 release!
Stream: “All Day” – Dogs At Large
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📸 © Justin Barnes art © Steve Abel