CD of the Month: Dead Mechanical "Addict Rhythms"


I would imagine that Dead Mechanical would cringe to hear me describe their newest album, Addict Rhythms, as a "throwback" to 1990's era underground pop-punk.  But, when you first play this record, that's exactly what you think.  And, for me, that made me instantly excited.  However, as I listened to Addict Ryhthms a few more times, it began to take on a life outside of The Jawbreaker Era from which it may have been born.  It began to sound like this record had been crafted as if the pop-punk anthems of the 1990's had never really gone away, leaving these songs as a natural progression of the genre into the cultural realities of today.  Dead Mechanical manages to convey this feeling on a record that is well crafted and arranged, but produced low-fi enough to still carry the energy of a live show.  Their songs are catchy and melodic, but with edges that are just rough enough to let you know that they mean business.  

Their song, "Last show," depicts the final show of a band that may or may not be fictional from the perspective of an adoring fan.  The feeling of loss is expressed openly, but the song doesn't sound like a lamentation, it sounds like a celebration.  You can't help but feel like this is somehow a metaphor for an entire genre or scene of music, ending and beginning, but always filled with vigor and life.

Addict Rhythms is at its best during anthemic choruses that challenge a generation at risk of losing its identity to re-take control of their lives.  You can really feel this on "Sidewalks," a song that surrounds a lyrical portrait of voiceless and unappreciated youth with a resoundingly optimistic refrain:  "You can hit the sidewalks early," a call to arms for the weary to pick themselves up by the bootstraps and start going somewhere.

If you're in need of picking up, the first place you should head is to Traffic Street Records to pick up Addict Rhythms. -Jarrett