Across the Sun, ‘The Ardent Optimist’ — Song Premiere
The lack of a relationship between Across the Sun lead singer Brandon Davis and his father has provided good songwriting material — no matter how difficult the subject matter. The result is the tune ‘The Ardent Optimist’ off the album ‘Pestilence and Rapture.’
“The song is basically me talking to my father through lyrics,” a cheerful Davis told Noisecreep. “I never really got to know my dad. He’s kind of been in and out of my life since I was a baby. I’ve had a lot of issues with that growing up. I had to adjust to that — not really having a father figure. I guess it was just the right time to put it to a song. It’s kind of crazy about how it fell into itself. It wrote itself. It was crazy.”
Listen to ‘The Ardent Optimist’
Having years to dwell on the subject gave Davis the strength to sing about the situation. “I had a lot of time to think about it and decide how I feel about the whole situation,” Davis said. “If you read the lyrics and if you know what it’s about, it’ll all make sense. It’s exactly how I feel about the situation. Basically it’s just saying, ‘I know you’ve been in and out of my life. You’ve been in and out of jail. I don’t know you, but I want to know you. If you come back and stay this time, I’ll welcome you with open arms. I just want you in my life,’ pretty much.”
In retrospect, Davis said an errant communication with his father inspired the song. “Now that you mention it, right before I wrote the song, he contacted me randomly,” Davis said. “Maybe that’s what provoked the start up of it. He contacted me and we wrote and recorded the album and then he kind of disappeared again. I haven’t heard from him in a while.”
‘Pestilence and Rapture’ was released in mid-September to favorable reviews. The album was written in haste just before Across the Sun headed out on tour. It wasn’t meant to be that way, Davis said.
“We had about one and a half songs of it written and we figured, ‘OK, We have some ideas. We’re going on tour in three and a half to four weeks. We’ll just kind of work on it until then, come back, finish it and record it, and we’ll be good for the fall release,’ he said.
“But then we had label interest and they said, ‘We really want to work with you but we want to release your album as you’re leaving for tour.’ We said, ‘Well the album’s not even written yet.’ They were like, ‘Sounds like you’ve got some work to do.’ In three and a half to four weeks, we wrote five brand new songs and recorded them before we left. We left literally the day after I finished my vocals.
“I lost my voice because I spent three all-nighters in a row in the studio getting this thing done. It was worth it but I had to sit out a few shows in the beginning of tour. It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you have so much pressure behind you. It was a good stress. This album is the best group of songs we’ve ever created to date.”