It seems like I’m always talking about a mix of styles these days, but The Roadkill are one hell of an example of a mix. They aren’t a band that are content to be labelled as one thing, which makes reviewing them a bit of a bastard, but an enjoyable thing.
Take Choke for example, this track alone is like a combination of industrial, nu-metal, classic rock and good old 80s heavy metal. The guitar solos wouldn’t be out of place on a Maiden record while some of the riffs would be happy on a KISS or ZZ Top album, the vocals are barked in an almost rap like fashion yet in other tracks we get shrill King Diamond cries (The Face Without A Name) or softly sung ballads (Loveless).
Lock Up Your Daughters has a glam meets Australian rock vibe going on while OMG takes this and adds a taste of pop to it. Indecently, remember Pleasure Slave by Manowar? Remember the sprint across the room to turn down the volume during the intro orgy so the neighbours wouldn’t think you were up to the one handed shuffle? The intro to OMG had me reliving that classic volume slap.
I know I’m throwing a lot of comparisons about here; I should take a second and say this is purely to give you an idea of the sound mix. The Roadkill sound like The Roadkill, not just a mix of bands and styles.
As if to counter the sleazier songs, the albums ballad, Loveless, brings Reborn to a close. It was an odd moment for me, on one hand, the repetition of “loveless” grated on me a little, on the other, it was utterly captivating. The instrument work combined with the repetition sucks you right into the song.
The album is almost painfully catchy at times, after hearing Choke for the first time I had the verse stuck in my head for the next couple of hours (listening back to verify that it was definitely Choke has caused it to get stuck right back in there).
In terms of recording, there’s a very prominent bass sound which in my book is always a good thing, I’ll never understand why it is so often buried in the mix. The vocals are very dry sounding which is slightly startling at first, maybe because we’re all so used to reverb laden vocals. It creates a more unique sound for the band which can easily be carried forward into the live scene.
The guitar solos share this quality, there are no effects filled shred fests here, in fact this is a highlight of the album; the guitar work in the solos is reminiscent of Adrian Smith’s earlier work.
All in all, another very enjoyable album. This came out at the tail end of 2013 but this is my first play through. If this is the shape of things to come in 2014, we’re all in for a good year. It’s nice to hear bands still putting out fresh music and The Roadkill have achieved just that. Coming in at around 30 minutes, it’s more than worth a short half an hour of your life to give Reborn a listen.
We generally like to rate bands by their specific style of music and their stature as it’s a bit unfair to rate bands of different genres and sizes by the same scale. Unfortunately with The Roadkill’s mix we don’t have an appropriate scale for them! However, based on their own style of music, the recording, the songs and the size of the band, we feel this is a 4 out of 5. For regular visitors, we’re making changes to the system so check the Rating System page soon for more.