After listening to Dead To Me’s latest release Moscow Penny Ante it made me think about something bassist/vocalist Chicken said the last time I interviewed him. I asked him if he agreed that the band’s sound had seemed to change from the release of their first LP Cuban Ballerina. “I do agree with that and I’m proud of it. I don’t ever want to keep putting out the same records.” replied Chicken. With this new record, the guys definitely don’t have to worry about putting out the same record and becoming repetitive. Dead To Me’s sound can't be labeled, but that’s a huge part of their appeal. The band has never been one to take the easy way out, but being fearless has definitely paid off for them.
Moscow Penny Ante starts off with the killer sounding track “Undertow.” It’s fast-paced and the fresh sounds will grab your attention. Keeping with the theme of switching things up, the band plays around more with dual vocals on this record. Guitarist/vocalist Sam Johnson’s vocals on this record stand out stronger than previous releases. I personally like Chicken’s vocals better, however some of the dual vocals on this record came together really well. “I Love My Problems” is the perfect example of this. The variation was nice to hear and it doesn’t hurt that Chicken’s vocals sound stronger than ever on this record. “Never Relief” is another great track that the vocals blend well together on. Some tracks stand out way more than others, however the more you listen to Moscow Penny Ante, the more you'll get into it.
There used to be a point where Dead To Me songs were so addicting that I’d keep certain songs on repeat. Listening to songs like “The Hand With Inherited Rings” and “The Monarch Hotel” make me remember how catchy their songs can be. I had heard "The Monarch Hotel" before I listened to the entire record and that song alone is impressive. If there are any skeptics left out there, I definitely recommend listening to that song first. The second half the record feels stronger to me, but by the time you listen to that last song you'll warm up to the opening tracks.
“The World Has Gone Mad” is one of the best closers I’ve heard in a long time. The song closes the record perfectly and at the same time makes you want to listen to it all over again. Moscow Penny Ante is an incredibly honest and impressive record from Dead To Me. These guys are proving that they aren't going to slow down anytime soon. Plus, it's nice to see the progress of the band and this record shows just how much they've grown.
8.0 / 10
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