Wednesday, May 10, 2017

LP Review: "Reapers" by Dreadlords

It's been over ten years, but something kind of mystical happened to me.

Let's back up the truck a little bit with some explanation. I'm from St. Louis. It's the closest thing I have to a hometown. In truth, my life has been all over the STL Metro Area and even Rural Missouri.

My high school years were spent in Illinois and when they were done, my car was already packed and my life picked back up in St. Louis without as much as a goodbye.

That chapter was closed. There was essentially no contact after that. But ten years after the fact, my mind started buzzing about an old friend of mine. Now, remember, this was pre-social media. I began frantically trying to re-connect with her. Months passed, and out of nowhere, there she was at a Beer Festival I was at.

Strange how the flotsam and jetsam of our life works that way isn't it?

During a hard drive cleaning process, I mistakenly deleted Drealords's previous album, Death Angel, because I'd forgotten I'd reviewed it. Hey, this guy isn't perfect and sometimes my mind doesn't hold onto things that should.

So, upon discovering that, my mind has been filled with the Dreadlords. Strange, but true.

Then not a week ago, an email arrived containing their brand new record, Reapers. So let's talk about that instead of me.

Dreadlords are a hard band to categorize, but I'd call them Dirty Spartan Gothic Blues that focuses on the metaphysical.

If you thought that Robert Johnson focused too little on Satan, well, then I have a band for you, my friend!

In terms of sound, there's not really much to their songs. There's a guitar that's just toeing the line between clean and overdriven, think about The Yardbirds.

There's a drummer in the background beating along with the chords. There's very little in the way of solos or melodic playing.

It's kind of an open air worship interspersed with samples from the news. It's a testament to their songs that they're so compelling without piling up layer after layer of sound.

It's an understated version of Gothic music or an overstated version of Delta Blues. Finding the latitude and longitude of what they do is exceedingly difficult. There is not a single other band I can point you to in order to understand this.

It would be a good mix of Robert Johnson, The Cure (or at least what The Cure is in my mind), and Ummagumma Era Pink Floyd.

But then it's a bit on the evil side from there.

Release: 4/28/17
Genre: Occult Blues
Label: Urban Yeti Records
Formats: CD/Digital

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