Dead Icons are a Hardcore, four piece outfit hailing from Lexington, Kentucky who have been together for around two and a half years. 2010 saw the release of their five track EP 'Vultures' but 'Condemned' is their first full length album and I have to say, a damn good effort indeed. Lexington is not particularly prominent in the Hardcore scene so the band has had to work extra hard to get to where they are now.
'Condemned' is an album of twelve 'straight to the point' tracks, packed with energy. Opening up with 'Folding Aces', a track that could become a Hardcore anthem. It doesn't take long to realise they start the way they mean to continue and you had better be able to keep up.
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Most of the tracks are around the two minute mark so you are guaranteed that the guys are in, make their point and out again, no messing. Every track is totally listenable which I always like in an album. There is nothing that ruins my listening pleasure more than having to skip a track but that doesn't happen here.
A stand out track for me is 'Everything Has A Price'. Not an easy decision when there are so many excellent tracks to choose from. It's a 'kick ass' track with a warning! "Everything has a price, whether you want it or not, this is what you will find when you take everything for granted, you will always lose." Consider yourself warned!
The tracks 'The Longer You Wait', 'Life Of Uncertainty', and 'Hourglass' also appeared on their 'Vultures' EP.
I love William Johns' strong, classic Hardcore, in your face vocal style and the fast paced chugging guitars from Drew Cruse and Stanley Sievers all tied together with tight drumming from Michael Khan. This, for me, is what Hardcore is all about.
The band consider this to be the best material they have written so far and having heard some of their demo, which was also exciting and excellent stuff, I agree.
They have definitely progressed in the right direction. There is also a definite Terror influence in the overall sound and that can never be a bad thing.
Musically this band has a lot to offer and it will be interesting to see how they develop. They are certainly in the right place with Bullet Tooth Records, the new label run by Josh Grabelle, formerly with Trustkill Records.
Right now they are an exciting and refreshing addition to the Hardcore scene and if they continue in this vein they will surely be a musical force to be reckoned with.