Dashboard Spin Emo Into Arena Rock

Chris Carrabba's lusher sounds inspired by time in Jamaica

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For the follow-up to 2003's A Mark, a Mission, a Brand, a Scar, Dashboard frontman Chris Carrabba flew to Jamaica to work with producer Daniel Lanois (Bob Dylan, U2).

"We'd discuss songs on a picnic table overlooking the ocean and then go out swimming," says Carrabba. Recorded mostly on breaks from touring, the new disc pumps up Dashboard's emo sound to arena-rock proportions. The single "Don't Wait" spotlights Carrabba's gorgeous tenor, incorporating layers of guitar and backing vocals for an uncharacteristically lush sound.

"I walked offstage and wrote the song," says Carrabba. "So I was really drawing on that energy." One of the singer's favorite tracks, "Heaven Here," wasn't originally intended for the album. "I make all kinds of music just for myself," says Carrabba. "Daniel got his hands on some of it, and he just flipped out and goaded me into writing lyrics. Within ten minutes it was a real song you could sink your teeth into."

Dashboard Confessional kick off a college tour this Friday. Their as-yet-untitled new album is expected to hit stores in late May.

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