What can I say about a band that covers Spandau Ballet’s “True”? Duvall, formed in 2001, is able to transform the ’80s hit into a song of its own sound — the sound a bit reminiscent of 1996’s budding pop-punk scene. That’s not surprising, given that two of Duvall’s three members — vocalists and guitarists Josh and Eli Caterer — are former members of the pioneering pop-punk quartet Smoking Popes. In fact, each song on Volume and Density has that pop-punk quality, which makes the album somewhat repetitive. It is radio friendly, though, particularly the opener “All in Your Hands” and its follower “Way Deep Inside.” While the outdated style gets a bit tiring, Volume and Density is fairly easy to listen to all the way through, and unless you know any of the band’s background, it probably would not be apparent that there is a Christian influence until final track “Jesus Never Leaves Me” starts playing. The best comparisons are to early Weezer, the Weakerthans, and — gasp! — the Smoking Popes. Overall, this actually isn’t a bad record, especially if you long for the days of Clueless and nerd rock. Mmm, yeah.
[more:] – 2003