Singles are a tough cookie to crack. Sometimes it’s a great preview of what’s to come and other times, they’re something completely out of left field meant to snag a new audience (Lookin’ at you, Sugar Ray’s “Fly”). As a reviewer/writer/blogger/editor-type person, singles can be an even tougher pill to swallow especially with an album on the way: Do we review both? One or the other? You don’t wanna oversaturate the old tl’s and you definitely don’t want to be redundant when talking about a band or a particular single either separate from or within a review. For us it’s a matter of not having enough hours in the day to cover everything so in a case like Already Dead where we were, ahem, already diggin’ the singles, having the album come relatively soon after the first taste is a godsend because we can skip the middleman and bring you the whole shebang in one fell swoop. So let’s go!
But I digress!
Boston’s Already Dead is the best kind of aural enigma. They’re along the lines of Against Me! or Dropkick Murphy’s with their anthem crafting ability and then you throw in a little bit of the more melodic NYHC of the ’90’s a la Life Of Agony’s classic River Runs Red plus some Bad Religion, some Hip-Hop, some Ska, and some Country twang and you have a local outfit that absolutely sounds like NO ONE in the scene today.
As mentioned, we were already a fan after the propulsive lead singles “Stability” and the title track made their way to our ears earlier this year but they’re nothing like the rest of what My Collar Is Blue holds (In the best way possible, not like the dastardly Sugar Ray). Sandwiched between those two new school sing-a-long anthems sits a rad Punk Western (Yes, you read that right!) ditty that hits hard like that previously touched upon ’90’s NYHC sound mixed with Rockabilly and The Blues Brothers’ iconic version of the theme from Rawhide. Wrap your head around that for a moment! Then there’s “Hypocrite” that hits even harder with drummer Nick Cali pummeling away and propelling the song further while vocalist/guitarist Daniel Cummings leads with a commanding presence and Brandon Bartlett regales listeners with a riotous rumble from the bass.
And you ain’t heard nothin’ yet when BOS The Rapper joins the fray for “City’s Burnin'” and offers up a sound that’s like Talking Heads mixing it up with Rancid to create a new flavor in the Already Dead sonic pantry. It’s kind of a haunting Ska complete with horns (Sax by Jon Powell) that’s so heavy in a cerebrally dense way and less the chugga chugga guitar riff way, ya dig? “Bruises And Bottles” goes back to basics with a more in-your-face rabble rouser before BOS The Rapper returns for the finale of “Something Of Freedom” which is really kind of beautiful, showcasing the songwriting prowess of Cummings and centered around a huge chorus at its’ core with trumpet accompaniment from Russ Robar adding another element to this complex Boston trio that you should definitely pay attention to.
My Collar Is Blue lands on October 14th and you can pre-order/pre-save your copy now by heading here and for the latest on Already Dead, including where you can see them live out and about, follow them across their socials by clicking here or here.