It’s The Wednesday Sludge and you know what that means! This week we are taking our first trip down under to check out our friends in DEAD.
Their new record We Won’t Let You Sleep (We Empty Rooms) drops next month, trudging and crunching its way to a roaring good time. For those unaware, this record actually marks the third entry in what the band calls “The Trilogy” (which is actually a four-part series). After my first listen of the record, I got a lot of strong Beastwars vibes off the sound. At the album’s foundation there is the distortion and grit that makes for the sludge atmosphere, but blended in are rhythms and flow that create a rock and roll mentality. “Fingers As Arrows” holds to this aggressive crunch while keeping up a vibrant groove that rocks with anger and playfulness. This contrast in low sounds to electric highs creates a mix of fun song structure chemistry that keeps the listener guessing (something common throughout the album). Towards the end the song drops into this droning aura where the guitar and drums crash down and echo through the haze.
“Chartreuse Blew” brings in the groove with a thick churn that rattles on. This is a pretty solid jam track that takes off and settles only briefly during the joyride. The guitar throughout We Won’t Let You Sleep comes with a warmth that vibrates in each song, while the drumming clashes forward in drive. Along with the thunderous vocals and somber bass work, DEAD creates a sound and energy that is reminiscent of a barroom rock club. The songs are dirty and hit hard, while still keeping just enough of a fun kick involved. Tracks such as “Where’s My Gold Star?” and “Frank Lee” are pure muck dripping sludge goodness. This is material that drags on with somber moodiness and abrasive instrumentation through vibrant guitars and thick bass notes. Overall what DEAD pull off successfully in this release is the energy of rock and roll, along with the brutal depth and heftiness of sludge atmosphere.
Below you can stream “Fingers As Arrows” and “Chartreuse Blew” off of We Won’t Let You Sleep. If you like what you hear, check out the rest of the DEAD’s work via the We Empty Rooms Bandcamp page (where you can also preorder the record), and follow the band via Facebook.