More birth than death on this flashy debut
Death On Two Wheels makes rock ’n’ roll dangerous again, with slurry-blurry lyrics, half-cocked dreamspeak of portents and regret, and a formidable guitar attack that recalls the nasty duels Allen Collins waged with Gary Rossington before Skynyrd’s final plane ride. Following the same bumpy trail as Kings of Leon, this Atlanta foursome seems to be in pursuit of darker mysteries on the band’s self-released debut. And unlike the Kings, they have more range and a greater reverence for ’70s classic rock, not to mention the eccentric bite of vocalist Trae Vedder. Could he really have been christened with such a propitious rock name? No matter, he has the same grit and red clay in his voice that Chris Robinson had before he got famous and complacent—but there’s something even more disturbing in Vedder’s delivery that almost veers into goth. Especially on a song like “Bobby Havis,” which shudders with psychedelic anxiety. It’s a song so haunting it could’ve been penned in Rose Hill Cemetery next to Duane Allman’s headstone.
Listen to Death On Two Wheels' "Calling Us All Back Home" from Separation of Church & Fate on the band's MySpace page.