Plague Dogs is the sophomore album from the Athens, Georgia
trio Heros Severum. I'd have to say that listening to this
album is a full-on onslaught to the senses, and that may not be
a good thing. Heros Severum has managed to create an unholy amalgamation
of funk and prog rock not unlike throwing the raw styles of Skankin
Pickle with the funkalicious tunes of Sly and the Family
Stone and the B-52's. This album is the polar opposite
of refined and smooth. Band members Mandy Branch and
Eric Friar attack the vocals with ferocity and a raw emotion
which some have compared to the likes of the B-52's, and their
talk-singing style, while Davey Staton works the drums
like a red-headed step child.
Ok, so this band has definitely shown that they can rock, but
I think they are still a bit rough around the edges. For instance,
in my opinion, their lyrics could use some serious work. They
tend to do what many non-creative lyricists end up doing and
that is putting in repeating lyrics for each song. There are
entire songs which repeat the same lyrics to the point of making
me want to stab out my eardrums. I'm sorry, but in my little
isolated world that is not revolutionary or new, it's just irritating.
So the lyrics aren't great, does that mean you shouldn't check
out this album? Hell, no! If you are into prog rock or even funk,
this band is like musical heroin. The opening track "Let's
Go Swimming" has great hooks and some great guitar work with
Eric pounding out some convincing lead vocals and Mandy smoothing
out the roughness with her crystalline backup vocals. "I
Can" is another song that you'll be singing to yourself for
several hours afterwards. Mandy shows her talent at belting out
lyrics to this driving upbeat tune. Other tracks you should definitely
check out are "And Introducing
", "Dear Fearless
Leader", and "Sick Dog".
Heros Severum will not disappoint, so give 'em a shot and check
out their latest album!
1. Let's Go Swimming
2. Party Next Door
3. I Can
4. And Introducing
5. Dear Fearless Leader
6. A Sick Dog
9. A Nice Haircut
10. The Great Auk
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