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Rating 8/10

 

For Fans Of:
Jane’s Addiction, Rage Against The Machine, Sex Pistols

 

Sacramento, California duo Middle Class Rut is unleashing a new strain of razor-sharp rock into the veins of the music world with the release of Pick Up Your Head, out June 25 on Bright Antenna Records.

The pair combine the cutting eccentricities of Jane’s Addiction, with Tom Morello-esque screeching guitar elements, and the newly-infused banging-on-kegs-and-tire-hub percussive style of Slipknot.

 

All of the album’s elements were recorded by just two gentlemen (Zack Lopez – Guitars, Vocals and Sean Stockham – Drums, Vocals,); however, the duo recently added new touring members to help execute the sound for their live shows.

 

The album starts off by lighting a fire under your ass with, “Born Too Late,” and for the remainder of the adrenaline-fueled, white-knuckle plunge into the inferno that is Pick Up Your Head the momentum never dies. Emphasizing the material’s more in-your-face punk elements, Lopez leaps straight for the jugular with his own problems rather than trying to hide them.

Leech,rolls along with the hum of the speakers shaking from distortion and the loose rattling of the percussion. It feeds nicely into, “Weather Vein,” with a rollicking bass line and screeching guitar solos.

“Cut the Line,” features more of the expansive percussion section heard throughout the album. “Sing While You Slave,” is for those 9-5 paper-pushers who get the life sucked out of them on a daily basis. “Dead Eye,” is somewhat a ballad, with drummer Sean taking over the vocal duties for a nice change of pace while Zack picks up an acoustic guitar for the rhythm.

“Pick Up Your Head,” is a great jam track, featuring a Jane’s Addiction-esque “Aahhhhh” action and syncopated chorus. “Police Man,” has a junkyard stomp rhythm to it. The final track of the album, “Take A Shot,” slows it down for a nice wrap-up to the record, leaving you walking away bruised and exhausted, yet victorious.

 

Compared to their previous album No Name No Color, MCR ran this record through the dirt of a salvage yard and came out with a grittier sound and a beefed-up percussion section (kegs, trash can lids, brake discs). Zack puts on a little more screaming and still embeds his signature octave pedal for the screeching guitar effects. They’re a band with a unique confidence that engulfs you and makes you want to put your middle finger to the world, simultaneously turning up the volume to drown out everything else. The listening experience is like getting into a brawl with your smug boss in the middle of a hurricane.

 

 
Pick Up Your Head conquers  the sophomore slump and secures this unstoppable duo into the speakers of anyone who wants to wash away all the BS with some loud music.
 

 

 

MC Rut

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