Dirt River Radio may be releasing music in 2017 but their hearts would find a home in days gone by, in the golden era of hard rock and all the vitriolic, unbridled expression that came with it.
A six-piece from Melbourne referred to by fans simply as The Dirties, they’re currently gearing up for the release of their new LP Sun City White. Bluesy, gloomy and vicious as the storm, it’s a dynamite record that’s guaranteed to melt some faces and break some hearts as soon as it drops this weekend.
Revel in true rock n roll with Sun City White, a ferociously compelling album that will define Dirt River Radio for years to come.
While the first track we heard from the record, a diabolical cut named The Cocksucking Blues, was raunchy blues rock at its hardest, a large portion of Sun City White staggers along a more lackadaisical path. Slow burning, emotional and sometimes even sermon-like jams are peppered through an otherwise rough-edged LP, lending the tracklist a staggering amount of character with their inclusion.
But don’t let that scare away your inner headbanger. Sun City White is undoubtedly an album to cut loose to, reaching dangerous levels of overdriven insanity in its fiercest moments.
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Opener Fukushima Blues immediately brings in one of those moments. Chunky riff work underpins a lead guitar hell-bent on blowing every eardrum it touches while deepened, nightmare vocals deliriously rip into the mix, unapologetic in their venomous touch.
And it’s this lack of musical or stylistic remorse which is such a potent draw card to Dirt River Radio. These grungey rockers wear their dirty hearts on the sleeve in every facet of themselves, unembarrassed by what the wider world would consider smutty or dishevelled.
Without this honest attitude it would be impossible for songs like Methamphetamine Boogie or The Ballad Of Jackie Flavours to emerge. Although both are frighteningly catchy in their own right, they tackle the morose with an efficiency which only a fellow ‘Dirty’ could muster.
“She talks about these songs, they’re nothing new to me
Written by an American in the 20th century
Every one of these words rings true.”
Drugs, decrepitude and a lover’s delirium are entwined through the album, Dirt River Radio bringing these shadowy corners of the world into the light in the vein of The Velvet Underground or, closer to home, Neighbourhood Void.
This line of thinking hits an emotional summit in the record’s title track Sun City White. The slowest track on the record, its very placement amongst harder cuts lends it the same strain of brevity and depth as Guns N’ Roses attacking November Rain.
A ballad to the “reckless and beautiful”, it’s apparent why Sun City White was chosen as Dirt River Radio’s title track.
On the fun side of the record, rambunctious hits like Black Eyed Mondays and Postcards From The Road will surely send fans into a soaring, booze-soaked delirium once they hit the live stage. The French interludes of the former are as delicious as the line-dancer rhythms of the latter, surefire crowd pleasers from start to finish.
If you’re one of the masses who wish every day that they were alive when these legends were thrashing stages to pieces, do yourself a favour and throw on Sun City White this Saturday.
Dirt River Radio are launching Sun City White at Melbourne’s Ding Dong Lounge this Saturday April 29. Grab the tickets, and the finer details, right here.