London based heavy rock band Dead Man’s Whiskey have been working their way into our ears with classic rock/blues inspired music since 2016. With live performances around their home city, playing alongside such bands as KilliT, Stone Broken and Tequila Mockingbird, and hitting the airwaves on some local radio stations, the guys have a growing following and deservedly so.
Billy Kons, lead guitar, Elliott D’Alvarez, rhythm guitar, Charlie G-Ray, drums, James Titley, bass and Nico Rogers on vocals, have already demonstrated their powerful classic rock music with their first EP ‘War Machine’ and are about to release their first album ‘Under The Gun’.
There are 7 tracks on the album and each one deserves a few words:
‘Live Loud and Ready’ no messing about going straight into a wonderfully guitar riff laden track. This has all the makings of an anthemic live track, full of toe tapping, head nodding – just enough gravel and blues in Nico’s voice. The duelling riffs from the twin guitars bringing so much to the track. Melodic and catchy a great opener.
‘This Fight’ beginning with the pulsing bass lying below guitar feedback, within 10 seconds this feels like it’s going to be another kick ass track and oh guess what? – it is! Perfect pauses, passionate lyrics, ripping it up riffs.
‘My Year’ – southern blues guitar leading into heavy beats with an equally bluesy vocal from Nico with a richness like chocolate. Grimy guitars pull the track from blues to rock and back again.
‘Hoe Street’ classic rock riffs, classic rock feel, up tempo and alive, it reminds me of Black Stone Cherry crossed with 80’s classic rock. That riff feels like I’ve heard it before, well put together with a very live sound to the vocal too.
‘Make You Proud’. Gentler slower paced. Nico shows us what his voice is capable of – beautiful, change of vibe – blues gravel coming out to play with the melody – very ‘Slashesque’ riffs. Key changes and a vocal full of longing and hurt.
‘War Machine’ with thuddingly heavy drums, growling grimy guitars and throaty growling vocal to match.
‘Rooster Crows’ bumping and grinding guitars, musically tight with an angry, frustrated vocal. The backing vocals fill out the chorus and give this one a feel that the band are loving this – riff laden loveliness another track which will bring the house down live.
What impressed me with this album is the sheer quality of every track. Some of the riffs and hooks feel familiar, obviously laced with influences from classic British rock bands but that is no bad thing. It’s well produced and every track feels alive. I can’t find anything bad to say so I’ll go with even more gushing praise. The best track on the album for me without a doubt is ‘Make You Proud’. Nico has the pipes to lead the track with such passion and incredible tone. Beautifully written lyrics and even more beautifully written and played music. A simply stunning track. I’m sure everyone will have a different favourite so buy the album, put it on the sound system and turn it up loud. This is great music from a young bunch of guys who really know what they are doing.