Brand New: Deja Entendu (2003)

“And the coastline is quiet…”

In the fall of 2003, I moved into a ~150 square foot dorm room with two other guys that I hadn’t met before. Jim and Rob had both come ashore from Long Island, eager to test the rigors of higher education at Marist College in Poughkeepsie, NY.

This was in the arcane, medieval days before Facebook enabled us to stalk people before meeting them. I remember, in the summer months leading up to the big move-in, I actually had to call these strangers on the phone to talk about what each of us was contributing to the room. And despite our best efforts, we still wound up with two mini fridges and no microwave.

Thankfully for all of us, both Jim and Rob were great guys who made the best of 150 square feet. I look back on the fall of 2003 with fond memories of good friends, excellent times and of course, new, interesting music.

That’s right, these strange Long Islanders listened to different music than I did in High School. Where my musical tendencies were rooted in the Chili Peppers and Incubus, or the inescapable 50 Cent and JaRule at most local parties, these guys were interested in new, exciting genres.

It was early in the semester that Rob — now known to many as Flannel Rob — introduced me to Brand New and their second studio album, Deja Entendu.

Rob himself has an interesting take on the album:

“I loved it when it came out, but I was taken aback by how polished it was, and I was a little hesitant to get both feet in the water on the first listen. Your Favorite Weapon and the EPs were raw as fuck, so Deja Entendu came across to me as a move towards mass appeal.

Of course, it’s still a rock solid album, and I didn’t have to finish the album to realize I loved it anyway. I knew that there were no more LI basement shows on the horizon for Brand New though.”

As a new listener, Deja Entendu to me was a raw, emotional outpouring the likes of which I’d never heard. And while indie/emo probably became a bit overdone in the mid 2000’s, this was so new to me at the time. I’d never heard anything like it. I dug right in and swiped this album off of Rob’s iTunes via MyTunes (it was amazing back in the day), plugged it on to my little SanDisk mp3 player and became a fan.

For all the flack the emo genre has gotten, this album really does still sound good in 2015. Rob, again:

“As far as how well it has held up, I guess that’s tough to say. I wouldn’t toss tracks from the album on a playlist unless I was looking to get sentimental. That’s not the case with their whole catalog, because they’ve got fun shit that holds up.


I opened my computer the other day, and [Chet] who had slept on my couch (and peaced out in the quiet of the night to meet a Tinder chick) had it playing on YouTube. So it has definitely held up for some of us because that was last week.”

Happy Sunday, folks, and Happy Listening.

Suitable for: That break you have between 11am and 2pm class.

Appropriate Playback Device: Portable CD player with a broken tray lid.

One thought on “Brand New: Deja Entendu (2003)

  1. I feel like this and good news for people who like bad news – modest mouse were Marist staples. Personally I think both these records were stepping stones of my musical shift from high school to college.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s