BY JOE HERNANDEZ
First formed in 2001, The Used have released their seventh studio album The Canyon on October 27, 2017. This is the first album without guitarist Quinn Allman, leaving vocalist Bert McCracken and bassist Jeph Howard as the remaining original members, and features their new guitarist Justin Shekoski. The band has since set out to tour the album with support from Glassjaw. In a series of videos on their YouTube channel, McCracken discusses their new album and the influences he drew from when creating it.
The album title was inspired by the actual canyons of Utah. McCracken describes these canyons as a place he spent his youth and the setting of his fondest memories with his family and friends. He further explains that those past memories came to share the same location that a close friend of his recently took his life. The Canyon is a concept album describing personal tragedies. It recounts the emotion and journey of McCracken’s acceptance of the passing of a loved one, and analyzes the meaning behind life’s experiences. The Canyon has been described by every media outlet the same way: raw. It’s a very personal album that’s intimacy is even more emphasized by the production behind it. The band strayed away from modern production techniques, embracing a more organic sound that featured uncompressed and unfiltered instrumental and vocal tracks recorded solely on tapes. This gave the album a greater sense of vulnerability, and helped The Used succeed in what they sought out to create. It brings out the authenticity and honesty in McCracken’s voice, and reveals the humanity and purpose behind what he’s saying. In the videos McCracken summarizes the album's message, saying, "We’re trying to understand mortality and maybe the bigger questions that we ask, why we might be here and what it’s all about." This is the album they were always chasing after, and one on par with their more recognized records like The Used, In Love and Death, and Maybe Memories.
Though the tour’s set has leaned toward The Canyon, after all there are 17 tracks on the album, it has featured fan favorites as well. To name a few, fans heading out to one of their shows can expect to hear The Taste of Ink, Maybe Memories, and Take It Away.
Come out to their show at Portland’s Roseland Theater on November 28, or find a show near you at one of their tour dates below:
Nov. 15 - San Antonio, TX @ Vibes Event Center
Nov. 18 - Houston, TX @ Revention Music Center
Nov. 19 - Dallas, TX @ Southside Ballroom
Nov. 21 - Phoenix, AZ @ The Van Buren
Nov. 24 - Las Vegas, NV @ House of Blues
Nov. 25 - Salt Lake City, UT @ The Complex
Nov. 28 - Portland, OR @ Roseland Theatre
Nov. 29 - Seattle, WA @ Showbox SoDo