Dead City Ruins
We were recently contacted by Australia based band, Dead City Ruins to let us know about an upcoming tour and their album, Midnight Killer. The band originally started out in London but soon found themselves heading back down under, building a fan base along the way and crafting their own path through the world of music. The band are scheduled to head back this way this year supporting the mighty Mastadon, along with other support slots with Blaze Bayley and Wolfmother, so this promises to be a band which you need to be looking out for!
Opening with Where You Gona Run there’s an immediate sense of some damned good hard rock to follow, crafting a sound which sounds both classic and fresh with the guitar work. Demonstrating why they’ve achieved supporting slots with the likes of Mastadon, this sound the band have crafted immediately grabs your attention, pulls you in and makes you want to get moving. Funky, hard hitting and catchy from the start, this is music which combines the key elements of heavy music with melody, keeping a sound which is accessible firmly the focus throughout and crafting a track which you’re simply going to want to play really, really loud.
Damn My Eyes follows on with the same sort of theme, opening bass heavy and launching into a riff strong enough to get the entire venue throbbing along with the band. Catchy once again, the vocals steal the show on this track, really grabbing your attention and getting you involved, making you want to sing along and join in with what the band are throwing out at you. I don’t know if it’s something to do with the Australian music scene, but these guys have got a bit of an Airbourne feel to their music, once again nodding towards the classic side of rock and metal but keeping it firmly sounding fresh and new. My Lay Massacre suddenly seems to mark a change in the album as it opens, fading into being before launching into a sludgy bass line accompanied by a wah tainted guitar line. The mix soon resumes the rock feel, only this time laden with more funk than before, basing the whole intro around a soaring lead line and that funky bass rhythm. Picking back up with the vocals, this is a serious high point on the album and a track which demonstrates the bands ability to craft songs which are going to get everyone singing along, everyone joining in and make them a household name.
Title track Midnight Killer comes up next, once again throwing out a lead line to get us in the mood before backing everything up with a hard hitting solid rock riff. Airing on the funkier side of things once again, there’s a sense of NWOBHM here combined with the funky approach of the likes of AC/DC, yet with an added freshness. In short, this is another track which you need to make sure you check out, it’s got everything you could possibly want from a rock track and stands out as my own personal favourite from the album. Toning everything down with Blues, suddenly the music takes on a slower, more emotional approach to proceedings. Opening softly with ringing guitars, you’re lured into this track wondering what it is that is going to follow on, how they’re going to transform this into another of their tracks. Becoming clearer as it progresses, the guitars add a sense of foreboding to proceedings, suggesting at darkness without actually going too far into it. Matching the title of the track, this is almost a blues track, yet without the clichéd approach which is so often found within the genre. Almost gothic in its darkness, this is a track which demonstrates these guys can turn their hand to producing anything they want to, firmly stamping their mark on the track whilst allowing the listener the opportunity to make up their own mind about it.
Go To War soon resumes the hard rocking sound that got me so involved with this album, launching straight in without any faffing around and hitting you squarely in the face with a hammering riff, pounding drum line and more of those awesome vocals. Funky and catchy once again, this resuming of the hard hitting approach is like the return of an old friend, once again lifting your spirits and renewing that desire to see the guys on the live scene. This feeling continues through Highway Girl, once again throwing into a rock fuelled melee of distorted guitars, pounding drum lines and sludgy bass rhythms. Funky, catchy, and sounding almost like this could be at home in a stadium rock setting, this is the sort of track you pray a band will play live, the sort of one which gets everyone dancing and loving every second of it. This is another serious highpoint on the album and a moment I highly advise you to check out – great stuff!
Closing with Fallen, there’s one last chance for a final hurrah from the guys, closing the album with another hard hitting rock track designed to get venues pumping and crowds joining in. Harking back to some of the massive rock bands of the 80’s/90’s, this is a track which secures the band as one to make sure you look out for on the live scene, and a track which a hell of a lot of people are going to love!
I didn’t know what to expect from Dead City Ruins when I saw who they were supporting on their upcoming tour, yet I’m still a little surprised by their sound. This is a band who have taken all of the elements of classic rock and metal, put them in a pot and crafted their own unique sound out of what remained. Funky, catchy, hard hitting, emotional, it’s all here – and it all works well as a unit! Take my advice, get out and see this band when they’re over here, I have a feeling you won’t be disappointed!
To find out more about Dead City Ruins, check out their Facebook page HERE.
Words: Dave Nicholls