They have a sound which more than backs up the punch and potency of their lyrical confrontation on the world today, and now US rockers Radiodrone have an album to really stir up attention. The Orange County quartet pulls no blows when it comes to unleashing their take on the social and political ills contaminating the landscape we all battle through and it is fair to say no quarter is given by their debut full-length. That is not to day it is all anger and violence though, The Truth Syndicate Diaries equipped with the thickest contagions, most virulent anthems, and a melodic prowess to give any band a run for its money. Is it the most original thing you will come across this year, probably not, but if looking for one massively invigorating and accomplished proposition, this is a done deal.
Radiodrone began early 2014 and quickly whipped up keen support and awareness for themselves through what has been called a “searing” live presence and tracks like Want it Back and NeverLoution, two early singles sparking acclaim and rich radio play. There is rebellion in the band’s rock ‘n’ roll and as suggested earlier in their lyrical stance, yet it is evolved into something which never gets predictable or is lacking in diversity. The band has been described as being “part schizoid Five Finger Death Punch on the heavy edge, part Foo Fighters rock with the commercial aspects and part hard grooves”, a valid hint which is quickly realised and more by album opener Game Change.
The album is top and tailed by intro skits /provocative commentaries, and every song split by the same, but the release really takes off once Game Change hits ears with rapping beats as its guitars brew up a tasty scrub of riffs. The track is soon into a welcoming feisty stride with the rhythms of drummer Danny Molgaard and bassist Stephen Appel continuing to offer threat and infectious tempting. A hard rock air and swing quickly hits the song as guitarist Ethan Hedayat lays a thick lure with his lead vocals, a strong presence assisted as potently in voice by fellow guitarist Randy Cash and Appel. It is a rousing stomp, stirring up the appetite with heavy rock ‘n’ roll hooks to hang your allegiance on and an anthemic might which easily diminishes any reason to moan the lack of major surprises.
The following Want it Back is similarly textured and crafted but quickly filling out into its own antagonistic and commanding character. The bass of Appel is wonderfully grizzly whilst the swinging slaps of Molgaard just seem to get more intensive and effective with every passing rally of beats. The track is a predator yet tempered by again impressive vocal strengths and blends, as well as the magnetic enterprise of both guitarists. You can feel a touch of bands like Seether, Godsmack, and Shinedown to the track, such flavours woven into its own if not unique certainly individual incitement.
NeverLoution is a more even tempered and reserved proposal yet with another throaty bass lure amidst wiry strands of sonic grooving, it blossoms into a tenacious and rigorously persuasive offering. Its melodic side and underlying snarl reminds a touch of Sick Puppies whilst its metallic groaning has a whisper of Nonpoint, and combined both aspects only add to another swift nudge on enjoyment before the gripping Get Your Head Down emerges with an enticing sonic shimmer and melodic coaxing. Appel persistently gives the richest alluring shadows to songs, and here his bass is an entrapping resonance leading ears straight into an infectious tempest making up the body of the song, but a stormy muscular affair built on spicy grooves and melodic flames.
Both Showdown and Massive keep things seriously rocking, the first with dirty blues lined walls around jagged riffs and stabbing beats driven by, as now expected, mouth-watering enterprise from vocals and guitars, and the second through its dusty croon across a restrained yet fiery and unreservedly catchy landscape. In their individual ways, the pair of tracks incites another surge of pleasure whilst impressing more, as the album, with every listen. Despite that potency though, they still have to submit to the best track on the album, the raging roar of Battle Call. Instantly like an old friend back to stir up trouble and anarchy, the song enters ears with a sturdy stride and confrontational attitude. The vocals are an easy conscription to its call alone but backed by the sinew driven rhythms and scything hooks of the track, it is an invigorating storm embracing broader melodic escapades to its vivaciously resourceful and incendiary canvas. Quite simply this is the kind of song the word anthem was composed for.
We’re Alright is a slow burner of a song, its smoulder working away on ears and thoughts with an underlying and unrelenting persistence. It also takes a few listens to find the same level of greed for its creative adventure as other exploits upon the album. Like Pop Evil meets Stone Sour, the song leaves a good impression from the off nevertheless triggering a want to go back for more. That success is aggressively ripe within the compelling and bracing snarl of Double Think, just one more offer upon The Truth Syndicate Diaries to get keenly involved with.
The album comes to a close with Don’t Get Me Started, one final voraciously galvanic and superbly crafted inflaming of emotion and energy from release and listener. It perfectly sums up The Truth Syndicate Diaries, an album which might not flirt with startling originality but out rocks and outshines most contenders, and yes it just gets better and better over time to.
The Truth Syndicate Diaries is available now on ITunes, and Amazon.