Originally Published September 8, 2013
Busting open a new album and being greeted by the sound of scratchy, distorted, old school guitars; is there any better way to be acquainted with a new artist/album? I’m a sucker for it, there’s absolutely no turning back as I’ve got to see where the tuned up six strings are heading. A few weeks back I had just gone wheels up at LAX with four hours of flight time ahead of me, I fired up a new album that as luck would have it began in just that very way. Little did I know I was about to take a guitar charged rock journey at 30,000 feet with Undead Anna’s debut self titled album.
The guitars of Wade England and singer Clayton Crowder emerge from the first note on the lead track “Nobody’s Home” with a grungy, distortion filled riff. England’s lead dances a bit over the grumbly rhythm of Crowder’s guitar throughout the track, both finding their place well in the structure of the opener. The tension of the track is further accentuated by a great looming bassline that is laid down by Justin Abell. “Nobody’s Home” sets the table perfectly for the album as Undead Anna uses this formula flawlessly on “Money Bought” and the grinding track “Hard Times”.
The best part of “Undead Anna” is that while the skills are there to bank on the grunge infused six string action leaving your jaw on the floor with astonishment, they’ve got far more to offer. The debut album is not limited to just heavier, grungy tunes. “Cleaning Mirrors” has a great pace and a catchy guitar riff that underlays the chorus. Other tracks like “Oh My God” and “So High” pack a more upbeat tone and brought me back to Default’s first record. “I’ve Become” starts out ballady but kicks up to a slow, Southern-esque jam (which is a necessity for any Kentucky based rock band). There’s some great balance to “Undead Anna” thanks to these tracks, they provide some real depth to the album.
While every member of Undead Anna certainly has moments where they shine on the album, “Monster” is the song that really ties it all together. Abell thumps down a heavy bass foundation to go with the crashing cymbals and thunderous beats of drummer Reid Wilkinson. Crowder’s vocals overlay it all with a rasp and grittiness that matches Abell’s bass tone perfectly. Not to be left out, Wade England swoops in at the end and delivers an incredible solo to close out the track. There’s not a bad track on “Undead Anna”, but this one truly shows their all out strength as a band.
There are few albums that have hooked me in the first minute like “Undead Anna” did. The guitars are addicting and the overall polish of the well produced album is impressive. Usually when you pop the ear buds in after you reach 10,000 ft you start counting the minutes until you are back on the tarmac. But on this occasion I found myself lost enough in the great Southern infused grunge album to get the gruff “Sir, you’ll have to power that down now we’re about to land” reminder. Scratchy, distorted, old school guitars…..nothin’ but trouble…..but absolutely irresistible.
As the Webmaster and Founder of Rocksposure.com, Chris Brach is always looking for new music from up and coming rock bands. You never know, they could be our next Artist of the Month! If there is something you think he should give a listen to, email him at GetRocked@Rocksposure.com.
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