Potential loaded and aggressively contagious, the self-titled release mini-album from UK rockers Dead City Souls is simply an irrepressibly enjoyable and impressive debut. It is an encounter which is firmly established in a recognisable heavy and hard rock seeding and stomps more with the presence of an already familiar friend than a brand new provocateur, but it does not stop the release from switching on appetite and emotions with its thoroughly satisfying and adventurous rampage of sound and energy.
Rocking out of Stoke-on-Trent, Dead City Souls formed in the spring of 2013 and were soon drawing and breeding potent local support and attention. This spread as their live presence and their reputation for fiery energy soaked performances. Spending last year also recording a host of demos in preparation for this album, the quintet hit the studio with Paul Hulme (Lawless, Demon) in May of this year and the result is a potently stirring riot posing as an album.
Starting with the almost blink and you miss length of decent intro Embark, band and album fully explodes with the following Back Against. The guitars of Jay Meehan and Scott Pinnington are swiftly upon ears with raw bracing riffs whilst in close attendance the crisp beats of Jake Nixon and bass predation of Glenn Culver add to the infectious lure of the song. In no time the strong vocals of Jordan Davies are adding their expression and weight to the increasingly punchy drive of the song, every aspect converging on an addictively catchy and fiery blaze of a chorus. The song is insatiable in its anthemic tempting and infectious tenacity from start to finish, an entrapment of body and emotions which arguably is not opening new doors of originality but does not prevent it making a seriously compelling and thrilling start to the release.
The following Breathe makes a gripping entrance as artillery of pulsating beats rain down on the senses but it is defused slightly once the song hits a more merciful stride. Nevertheless with thumping rhythms and caustic riffs against the increasingly impressing vocals of Davies roaring across its muscular frame, the track makes for a highly pleasing aggression driven slice of melodic rock with a pop tempting. Overall it is a steady if unimposing track but with enough invention for thoughts to get to grips with before the outstanding Save Me launches its predacious enterprise. Prowling with sinew clad riffs and as expected unrelentingly heavy rhythms, the song almost flirts with its antagonism before unveiling a seriously addictive and incendiary chorus; the type classic anthems are bred from. There is imagination to the guitar designs and flaming emotion to the thick texture and heart of the strong vocals, each only adding to the drama but it is that chorus which seals the deal enlisting feet, voice, and passion with ease.
Say Goodnight has the task of following the release’s pinnacle and with its intrigue of keys and rampant rhythmic rigour, the track soon has its own hold on ears and thoughts with another uniquely tenacious slab of rock pop. It also shows yet another twist of colour and diversity to the band’s sound, not a major leap but as shown by all tracks certainly an open side step in flavour and character which reinforces the success of the album, as again shown by excellent snarl of Hurt No More. The track is another major peak in the lofty heights of the release, its flaming riffs and acidic grooves the web to which thick vocal expression and a rugged terrain of riffs and melodic blazing bring a tasty John Bush era Anthrax spice.
The album is closed by the meaty hard rock stomp of Watch The World Burn, a track which is simply raw and irrepressibly contagious rock ‘n’ roll to test neck muscles and fill the appetite. It is a heftily pleasing end to a great introduction to Dead City Souls. There is unfiltered promise across the album which ignites every song in tandem with the sounds themselves, this not only provides a thoroughly enjoyable encounter but raises real anticipation for the band’s endeavours and evolution ahead.
Dead City Souls is available now through all good online stores and @ http://deadcitysouls1.bandcamp.com/album/dead-city-souls
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