Whiskey Avengers – Dead Man Rockin’
1.) Who Are They
4.) Uncle Sam
7.) High All Night
8.) Feel Anything
9.) Generation Dooms
10.) Till I Die
11.) Me, Myself and I
The Pier Album Rating:
Release Date: October 25th, 2011
Official Site: Whiskey Avengers Website
Northern California natives, the Whiskey Avengers, have been spilling their infectious music out of the local dives and on to the streets since early 2006. This cohesive group is held together by a band of four seasoned players and performers with a total of three music degrees and a decade of touring amongst them. This allegiance of musical madmen has brought together a unique blend of styles that fans can’t resist shaking a butt at.
Whiskey Avengers harbors a diverse repertoire that can cater to many different audiences, from young to old. By offering the simple catchy anthems of reggae, the rhythms of traditional Jamaican ska stylings, the urban edge of underground hip-hop, the intensity of punk, and authenticity of folk music, they promise a few tears, lots of laughs, and an unshakeable connection with their audience.
Many musicians in contemporary music have lost hope and faith in the music industry, the radio, and the smudged politics that play a major role in deciding what should or shouldn’t be popular to the mainstream. The Whiskey Avengers however have risen from the industry’s ashes to fight existing mediocre musical trends and to protect our rights to bask in musical freedom. Needless to say, the Avenger’s third full-length album, Dead Man Rockin’ was effortlessly triumphant in this battle against mediocrity.
No matter if you are a reggae fan longing for heart-throbbing beats and heavy bass lines or one who prefers bouncy rhythms with their harmonies enriched with positivity, The Whiskey Avengers employ it all. Furthermore, the songs demonstrate the band’s flexibility amongst musical styles such as “Me, Myself and I,” which rubs off as Irish rock while there are even glimpses of their rapping abilities in “Warrior.”
Their audacious singing voices remind me of The Aggrolites front man and lead vocalist Jesse Wagner, while even a few songs musically resemble The Aggrolites rhythmic diversity. For instance in “Run,” there is not just a single offbeat skank per measure, but two or more exist depending on the instrument. The changes in tempo and various rhythmic patterns made this album a wild ride.
“I’m a two-toned renegade spit-fire whiskey drinkin’ rudeboy son of a bitch” is the opening line in “Warrior”, the second track and personal favorite on the album. If there is one thing for certain, the Avengers surely do have adoration for whiskey. In “Till I Die,” the lyrics tell a folksy story about alcohol and are filled with one-liners about the good times that it suffices. “Days are short, nights are long, singin’ these worn out drinking songs.”
“Uncle Sam” is a political piece that successfully compares the government to a dead-beat uncle that comes into your life way too late as the Avengers put it themselves. The electric keys build up to a staggering bassline while the keyboards and muted guitar double team the skanky rhythm. The bridge and short musical intermission is incredibly memorable, given the half-minute of playback time it occupies.
It is hard to pinpoint a few good songs featured on this album. But, Dead Man Rockin’ has everything a reggae fan could ask for. The positive vibrations, an original endeavor lyrically, and plenty of instrumental variety and structuring are all reasons that this album is one of my favorite listens of 2011.
Written & Reviewed by: Matt Emodi
[Editors Note: All reviews are reflective of the album in it’s entirety, from start to finish. These reviews are the honest opinion of each writer/reviewer, expressing their feedback as a genuine fan of the music. Each star rating reflects their review of the album, not the band. Music is subjective. Regardless of the review or star rating, we encourage you to listen to the music yourself & form your own opinion. Spread the awareness of all music in its art & contribution]