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Diary

4.4 out of 5 stars 113 customer reviews

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Audio CD, May 10, 1994
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Audio, Cassette, May 10, 1994
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 10, 1994)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sub Pop
  • ASIN: B0000035GC
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (113 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #187,724 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
You may already know this is considered a classic of the nineties, a cornerstone of the emo movement, and the best work of the band's career by many. What gets me, however, is how few people that have recently jumped on the emo bandwagon have never even heard of Sunny Day. This isn't poppy, the lyrics don't sound like high school love letters, and there's a lot of classic rock influence, but you cannot deny the way this album shaped emo today. Importance aside, just look at some of the amazing songs on here. "Seven" is the perfect opener, with tons of energy and a bit of a Rush feel to it. "In Circles" is next, a song that layed the groundwork for bands like Mineral and Appleseed Cast. "Song About An Angel" is my personal favorite. Like most of the songs on this album, it develops slowly, and takes time to be digested. "Diary" is best when listened to alone late at night, with time to read into the lyrics and take in all the nuances. Guitar and bass interplay is beautiful, and the drumming is very creative. I highly recommend everyone check this album out.
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Format: Audio CD
I like Weezer; don't get me wrong. They're clever, distinguished, joyful, nerdy, and smart. I've enjoyed their albums (especially "Pinkerton") for years now and I think they deserve much of the credit they get from critics. But why does no one point to SDRE's "Diary" as at least HELPING to catalyze a movement that would later become the end of the 90's to 2000's resurgent indie/emo scene? Fans, critics, and fellow musicians all pointed to Weezer's influence as the reason for a more introspective, lovelorn style in rock music. Very few name-drop SDRE or "Diary."

This confuses me a little. The album may be more diffiult than "The Blue Album," but usually critics thrive on obscurity. Think of obtuse records of recent praise - Arcade Fire's "Funeral," Wilco's "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot," Walkmen's "Bows + Arrows" - and tell me music magazines weren't clamoring to be "the first" to celebrate their originality. My conclusion is "diary" was ahead of its time. At least the blue album had connections to accesible music; the Pixies' intensity, Beatles/Beach Boys melody, guitar stylings of KISS. SDRE were much more humble.

The music is fantastic. Rock Operas are said to take its listeners on a journey through a story. "Diary" takes the listeners on a journey through emotion, the very definition of Emo. Floating effortlessly via atmospheric guitar work and solid rhythm, the debut touches on obscure ballads, piano, and darkness, but stays mainly in the signature electric guitar/scream-sing/painful-love-lyrics bread and butter of the genre. "In Circles" of course became the SDRE theme song, but in 94 it spoke to thousands of mid-west teens confused by love. It remains one of the most powerful singles of the 90's, and the album is one of the greatest debuts in alternative music history.

Overall: 8 out of 10.
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Format: Audio CD
Really great stuff here. Poetic, passionate, and perfect (well, near-so, it seems).
I never really got into the alternative scene much, and even less into the EMO shindig. From what I've read here, Sunny Day Real Estate seemed to practically form the genre with Diary, and I must say that I am hardly disinclined to agree with that statement, based solely on the pure quality of the music here.
What's most surprising about Diary to me is how unbelievably raw, and, yes, EMOtional this music is. It doesn't sound fake, pretentious, or whiny. It sounds very heartfelt, lyrical, and even spiritual. The instrumentation is edgy and distinct, and the lyrics and vocals are truly creative and captivating. In fact, I think the lyrics here match those of virtually any band I've heard throughout the course of the 90's...
I think, really, though, this album is so profound because of the aura it gives off, as the intricate and inspired guitar work and excellent drumming perfectly matches the lead singer's heavy-laden lyrics and meaningful messages. Very rarely do you see such a perfect meshing of music and lyrics. It's like... GOOD religious music! Imagine that. (Also interesting is the lead singer eventually becoming a Christian, which didn't come as a huge surprise when listening to the lyrics here.)
My personal favorites on the album are probably the unbelievable "Song About an Angel", which is about as passionate as music gets, the beautiful and driving "Seven" ("You'll taste it... In time"), the poetic and sincere "Circles", and the brilliant, mostly instrumental "Grendal", which is utterly fascinating.
Bottom line, get this one if you like good music.
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Format: Audio CD
Diary was released back in 1994, so now in 2000 is a fairly appropriate time to call this the greatest record ever produced in the history of rock music. I know you'll disagree with me, but with one listen to this, you'll be swept off your feet and see what I mean. The music is kind of midwestern-y, typical of emo music, but it is also darker, at least at the time this was released. No one should be without this quite pleasing piece of plastic and joy, no one. This here is what basically sparked the whole "emo" explosion in the states today.
Yes the cover art is very cunning, and it does draw you in from the start. But underneath the mysterious images on the front (these are quite ingenious), you get a tunnel to another world filled with wonderful melodies and highly emotional vocals. As with many other emo CDs, you get the feeling that Jeremy Eingk is very depressed throughout the verses. Then after a brief silence, or a drumbeat that gets louder and louder, they explod into a huge, euphoric chorus. Sunny Day Real Estate write some of the greatest lyrics known to man, including my favorite and the already mentioned "the rain was there to wash away my tears." Melodic guitars and sonic drum beats fill the record, while Jeremy's angst-ridden vocal soars above the music.
In all of their twisted brilliance, Sunny Day Real Estate are great at finding a melody and making it heavy, as demonstrated in the wonderfully titled "The Blankets Were The Stairs." Easy to listen to, Diary is exactly what you're looking for, and a great thing to purchase from the wonderful store that is Amazon.
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