Dead End Town 'The Road To Nowhere' Review

Dead End Town 'The Road To Nowhere' Review.

By Danielle Partis

Emerging from the catacombs of Hull, Dead End Town are a 5 piece hardcore unit, bringing a fresh, unique outlook to a tired, generic wave of metal. With tons of gigging and writing experience already, and more influences than they can count, Dead End Town are balls deep in talent, energy, and promise.  After only 3 short months together, Dead End Town have already whipped together an EP, tentatively titled 'The Road To Nowhere', after deciding to not name it after a number of ASDA products.

The Road to Nowhere opens with a rough, gritty, anthemic riff leading us in to the first track 'Archaic Roots'. From what I can gather, it's a thought-provoking belter where the protagonist is chooses to follow a crowd rather than to stay true to his own beliefs, destroys the trust of those closest to him and passes the point of no return. It's pretty evident from here on out that The Road to Nowhere is a concept.  a sole focus of the track is clean vocalist, Tom. I know that his smooth, acoustic vocal style isn't tailored to suit such a style, but that's what sets Dead End Town apart from a lot of bands like them. The clean lead guitar is a highlight of the track also.

Now they've reeled you in with a reasonably paced, relatable introduction, Dead End Town escalate by putting their proverbial foot in your face in the form of 'The Dreamer'. It's a punchy, infectious fist raiser, that really shows off the vocals of both Mikey and Tom, as well as guitarist Steve's capabilities. It's a track I'm sure we can all relate to - about the strive to make something of yourself and achieve your dreams. Inspiring stuff. Just as I was about to call out the lack of solos in this EP, Steve delivers a swift, meticulous solo over a bridge, as the track fades out in to a calm medley of clean picking. Dead End Town have really nailed the balance between aggression and tranquility; The Dreamer, although it's an upbeat song primarily, still manages to create the illusion of calm before the EP dives nose-first in to the EP's rightful centre piece.

'Wake Up Dead', is Dead End Town's first single, and rightly so. Opening with a swift twiddle and a fierce riff, this track is definitely the one that demonstrates the diversity and musicianship between the band. Now I've never been a fan of screamo vocals in any form, however the mix of Mikey's barbaric roars and Tom's distinctive, sharp singing is particularly enjoyable. Wake Up Dead is an anthem dedicated to overcoming the one person who made your life unbearable. The person who assumes control without you even being aware until it's too late. As well as being the most interesting composition on the EP, it's a track I can relate to on a few levels, and of course, connecting on a personal level is what makes music that more gratifying, am I right?

 Bassist Mike opens this one, not with a tasty bass line, but a less charming exclamation  regarding crabs. 'The Last of Us' is yet another turbulent, ferocious track that will no doubt have it's listeners exorcising rage in the pit. This little beast covers the topic of accepting fear in order to overcome it, and do what you need to do. I'm quite fond of the malevolent little riff played throughout too. Drummer Chief really demonstrates his ability here too, although he's pretty quiet in the final master, he's an skilled, divergent player and is definitely the spine Dead End Town needs. The Last of Us ends on an abrupt twang before rearing it's majestic head for one last roar.

'Gargoyles'. is the final chapter on The Road to Nowhere, about being pushed to the limit and making that one last impossible hurdle to victory. The tempo speeds up significantly and lead vocalist Mikey is also pushed to the limit. Well, not THE limit, I for one think this guy is capable of way more than this EP could contain!  The chorus is definitely a crowd bouncer, and there's a nice brutal breakdown followed by a nice, thrashy instrumental crafted for a good mosh before the EP fades out for the final time. Like all good records, I'm left craving another listen.

One aspect of the EP that falls short of quality, is the production. However before you whinge, it's meant to sound like that. The crackle throughout is reminiscent of an old vinyl, and the master itself is abrasive and loose; what it lacks in polished, fine tuned finalisation, it makes up for in guts and pure emotion. It's not an EP written to impress figureheads, it's a  fastidiously crafted accumulation of thoughts and concepts that will consume and inspire you. For a first EP, The Road to Nowhere is a triumph. I can only hope that the title is a figurative, and not the road that Dead End Town end up taking. They certainly have the talent and drive to go far.

The Road to Nowhere EP will be released on July 20th.

For more information hit up www.facebook.com/deadendtown





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