Reviews

The Damned Things New Album Ironiclast and Tour

Ironiclast by The Damned Things
Ironiclast
The Damned Things
Island/ Def Jam
Available December 14, 2010

In need of some true, no frills, strait-up Rock n’ Roll?

Scott Ian and Rob Caggiano of Anthrax, Keith Buckley of Every Time I Die, and Joe Trohman and Andy Hurley of Fall Out Boy, have collaborated on the Rock n’ Roll revival album of 2010 as the newly formed super-group, The Damned Things drops new LP, Ironiclast December 14, 2010, via Island Recordings and prepares for January tour.

What started as a jam session four years ago, when guitarists Joe Trohman and Scott Ian met and began writing music together, became a full-fledged project as they would soon invite Keith Buckley and Andy Hurley to join the mix. The band will provide a triple-guitar attack live as Josh Newton of Every Time I Die has been officially added to the group for touring bass-duties.

Without overstating the obvious, you are either going to love or hate this record. The music is poppy, over-flowing with catchy guitar and vocal hooks with über-produced musical characteristics you would expect from any of the contributing camps. The musical foundations have a definite Southern rock influence with melodies and note selection (that brings to mind another super-group) of early Down, Nola-era riff selection. This Southern influence is none-more-apparent than in the bridge of “We’ve Got A Situation Here,” where the the note selection could be right from Nola‘s opening track “Temptations Wings,” but delivered with a poppy rock n’ roll underbelly. Unlike Down, The Damned Things abandon the trashy, gritty elements of their Southern counterparts for a delivery that fits closer to Foo Fighters‘ sophomore album The Colour and the Shape.

The musical focus and actual musicianship on the album is noteworthy. Having never understood the draw of Fall Out Boy, I could still get into Ironicast. It should be noted that The Damned Things are not striving to be the heaviest band on the planet. The mission here is simple; play catchy, well-structured, thick and steady Rock n’ Roll. The vocals are overwhelmingly melodic and well-defined. Here we see Keith Buckley roll back some of the sneering tongue-in-cheek dialogues of ETID, for more straightforward, emotional themes as with opening track “Handbook for the Recently Deceased.” In this track, the music draws on the catchier, Southern elements of recent ETID tracks like “We’re Wolf” and “Wanderlust.” The driving and melodic Southern riffs are delivered in this new context with a more polished edge with straight-forward drumming with main function of highlighting the guitar work. With hook-line, “We’re aimed straight at each other. We are doomed to crash, so strike up a fire, light up the town..This was meant to last, so don’t try and fight it, the chaos will calm us down,” will stick with you for days after your first listen. Like it or not.

If you couldn’t get your head around the screamy-yelling, punk-rock style of Buckley on the early ETID works and are craving more of the clean vocals found sparingly throughout The Big Dirty and The New Junk Aesthetic, you are in for treat.

If Fall Out Boy was just just too much on the teen pop tip for you, don’t run just yet. Here we see Joe Troham step outside of his comfort range of and offer up some of the meatiest, catchiest riffin’ of his prolific career. If nothing else, it’s interesting to hear Troham and Hurley dabble with some heavier, more technical material, that will at times, surprise fans of Fall Out Boy. Also, not to be over-looked, is the ease at which Rob Caggiano and Scott Ian have adapted to such a smooth Rock n’ Roll offering, seamlessly incorporating elements of blues and metal throughout.

In short, if you looking for a solid, modern and true Rock n’ Roll album to usher in 2011, Ironicast is it.

1. “Handbook for the Recently Deceased” 4:16
2. “Bad Blood” 3:22
3. “Friday Night (Going Down In Flames)” 3:49
4. “We’ve Got a Situation Here” 4:27
5. “Black Heart” 3:18
6. “A Great Reckoning” 4:35
7. “Little Darling” 3:19
8. “Ironiclast” 2:32
9. “Grave Robber” 4:51
10. “The Blues Havin’ Blues”

You can stream Ironiclast in its entirety at UltimateGuitar.
More info at TheDamnedThings.com

Check out The Damned Things on Tour in 2011

December 12, 2010 HOB Chicago, IL
December 13, 2010 Rebel New York, NY
January 19, 2011 4th and B San Diego, CA
January 21, 2011 The Grove of Anaheim Anaheim, CA
January 22, 2011 The Joint Las Vegas, NV
January 23, 2011 Grand Sierra Resort Reno, NV
January 25, 2011 The Great Salt Air Salt Lake City, UT
January 27, 2011 Fillmore Denver, CO
January 28, 2011 Midland Theatre Kansas City, MO
January 29, 2011 Seven Flags Center Des Moines, IA
January 31, 2011 East Peoria Civic Center Peoria, IL
February 1, 2011 Congress Theatre Chicago, IL
February 2, 2011 McElroy Auditorium Waterloo, IA
February 4, 2011 Pop’s St. Louis, MO
February 5, 2011 1st Avenue Minneapolis, MN
February 8, 2011 Covelli Center Youngstown, OH
February 9, 2011 Expo 5 Louisville, KY
February 11, 2011 House of Blues Myrtle Beach, SC
February 12, 2011 Rams Head Live Baltimore, MD
February 13, 2011 Starland Ballroom Sayerville, NJ
February 15, 2011 Best Buy Theatre New York, NY
February 16, 2011 Mohegan Sun Arena Uncasville, CT
February 18, 2011 Northern Lights Albany, NY
February 19, 2011 Electric Factory Philadelphia, PA
February 20, 2011 Verizon Wireless Arena Manchester, NH
February 22, 2011 Fillmore Charlotte, NC
February 23, 2011 Hard Rock Live Orlando, FL
February 24, 2011 Tabernacle Atlanta, GA

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