I was laying in bed, in the dark, at around 11PM, when I received a notification on my phone from Dance with the Dead on Bandcamp.
"Dance with the Dead released a new album!" I never clicked a notification so fast, and immediately began listening to their latest release, Blackout. Featuring, Scar, Ravens in the Sky, and The Dawn.
When I reached the finale of their newborn creation, I finally fell asleep. I woke up the next morning, got in my car and replayed it. I wanted to decipher their new tracks, compare them to their previous albums, consider their differences and similarities, and bring it all to you in one organized spill of data and opinion.
Do you really want that? Do you want someone holding your hand through Dance with the Dead in their past and present and try to determine their future? No. You want someone just like you, who listens to music, and tells it how it is, and not try to act like they know everything.
Let me tell it to you straight :
Dance with the Dead is to genius, as butter is to bread.
Think I'm wrong? Listen to Blackout and try to deny their avant-garde exhibition. Then go back, and listen to their discography. Either all of it, or the highlights, at your own pace. Absorb that, come to your conclusions, and take an advil from headbanging for so long , because that's the symptom of falling in love with DWTD.
Dance with the Dead is a resurrection and an ever-evolving entity, musically inclined to tear down boundaries and fuse perspectives between heavy classic metal, sexy synth vibes, and unique wavelengths that introduce us to their own modern mayhem where the party never ends.
Let us get to the good part; The Official Album Review: by Cyber Drive Radio host, your's truly.
Scar introduces you to the world of Dance with the Dead with a powerful, distorted guitar intro. Crushing the wave just before leading you to that percussion.
Before you know it, you can't help but air-guitar and headbang to the final welcoming unison of the synth, and the soundbyte of a cheer between the peaks assures you that you're a permanent resident of this world Justin and Tony built on the skulls of their previous albums.
The elevation once the keyboard is introduced provides a stellar amalgamation that stirs the chords into an upbeat eargasm. Harmonious is the clap, shout, and shredding guitar strings. Every key pinpoints that place of wanting and you gradually urge for more. Cue the guitar solo and you are steps away from that next rise.
The drums are hitting so hard that it's basically second nature to just whip out those imaginary drumsticks and wail on it. Dancing in your underwear is highly acceptable at this point; I'm not judging you.
I could play this track over a dozen times and not get tired of it. When I do I picture an intense action sequence, a getaway, a Gundam battle, or maybe a war of zombies vs robots; anything goes. I'm sticking around for more regardless.
Ravens in the Sky as a title instantly brings me to Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds. If this was the soundtrack of that movie, it would've amped up that dread factor.
Back on track, THAT PERCUSSION is truly the one to shine here yet again. There is a resounding upbeat tone to this album that is truly growing on me. While the guitar plays in minor, all else is in major. So you get that familiar, "S*** is going down" fist pump feeling mixed with a guns-blazing "you're going down" vibe.
Tony and Justin have this incredible gift of overall presence with their music. It forces to be seen and heard and you can't stop listening. You notice the details in the smallest changes that fit so perfectly to bring the entire track together in a combustion of sound.
Killer birds. Battling Kaiju monsters. Biological experiments gone wrong. I have an overactive imagination and this album is the Original Soundtrack.
The Dawn is my favorite track on the album. *shhh don't tell the others*
What I appreciate is the singularity of the synth chords, a taste of chiptune, and then the isolation of the guitar and its playful checkpoint in this high-grade level of symbiotic sound.
The familiarity of the guitar solo reminds you of some of their greatest hits, like "Thrasher", "That House" and "Riot" as if Tony and Justin are showing us where they've been, and leading us on a journey to where they are now.
They don't have to force you to see their growth because you can hear it.
Driving fast and simultaneously dancing to The Dawn is probably my favorite thing to do right now.
Do so at your own risk though, the cop knocking at my window doesn't look as happy as I do showing off my sick moves.
For one thing; I cannot wait to finally see them live in April. I hope they play all three tracks live, or treat me to The Dawn.
Tony and Justin are currently on their 2020 tour with Das Mortal and Magic Sword, and they are going to rock the rooftops off. Any time I recommend music to people who are unfamiliar with this genre, I always make sure to include a few tracks by Dance with the Dead. There's no better feeling than hearing a friend or stranger tell me that those tracks are among their favorites. I know how I felt when I first heard them, and I couldn't resist the genre after that. It's an unshakeable addiction that just keeps growing.
I hope you all enjoyed reading my perspective of Blackout and I invite you to leave a comment below and tell me your thoughts! If you disagree, I dare you to leave a comment - I won't bite and always invite a difference of opinion for healthy conversation!
If you'd like MORE Dance with the Dead, be sure to visit the links below and show them your unrelenting support!