Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Dead Sound
Monuments To Alienation (demo number one)
Self-released, 2010

When I first saw the name of this band on a promotional flyer, I asked myself, "is this going to be the usual bollocks hardcore concoction?"  Then I saw their emboldened URL on the same flyer,, and I thought, "okay, maybe they're Propagandhi-esque radicals dedicated to the destruction of capitalism and the introduction of a sustainable, steady-state economic system."  Then I read the text description and decided to stop wasting time trying to guess stuff from a name (turns out 'Steady State' is the bands predecessor).

Dead Sound make the kind of grufty melodic Florida punk that causes so many people to go weak at the knees.  It's a vague maturation of the genre that's not so angry, with lyrics that are more personal, narrative-driven and sometimes melancholy, even if still occasionally referencing political issues (see the PTSD-themed 'Bryan').  It's not surprising to learn that the band has played with the likes of Leatherface and Smoke or Fire after hearing this record.  But in searching for familiar dead or undead sounds, you'll find there are some ingredients mixed into the pot to make it original enough.

The track 'Better on my Own' has a wonderful, nostalgic pop-punk momentum, particularly in it's introduction.  The ghost of Against Me!'s respectability can be heard a little in 'Another Rainy Night' and most certainly in the disc closer 'I Hope the Ending Is A Beginning'.  I think my favorite song however is 'Stale Coffee, Burnt Toast, and AM Radio'.  Somewhere in there the guitar becomes casually, modestly, effortlessly epic.  Although the sleeve indicates that the track is about spending a lonely night in a diner, the title made me think of those mornings when you just know you're going to have a bad day at the office.  And what could be more of a monument to alienation than the 9-to-5 cubicle or cash register?

And if the other side of the workplace equation, consumerism, gets you alienated, Dead Sound have a range of options for you. The band have not only made 'demo number one' (it has 11 tracks but alright) available as a free stream, you can download it for free or a donation of your choosing.  The hard copy, complete with cool screen-printed tree artwork and eco cardboard cases, is available for just 6 dollars.  Perhaps they should change their name to Red Sound as they're clearly a bunch of America-hating commies after all.

The band have recently acquired new members and are looking to play live in the next month or two.