Album review for The Skinny
Things haven’t gone so well for experimental Texan rockers …And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead. Last album So Divided was leaked a month before its release, they parted company with label Interscope, and if Wikipedia is to be believed, guitarist Kevin Allen was arrested on New Year’s Eve for destroying a Guitar Hero set-up in a bar after “failing to achieve a perfect score”.
But some artists thrive on misfortune, and Trail of Dead are no exceptions. Always known for pushing further in one song than some bands do in a career, The Century of Self is a work of Himalayan scale. Far Pavilions takes us back to punky Madonna territory before slowing to a stately chorus and scatterbomb drums, while Isis Unveiled, a caterwauling Celtic reel, pays heed to singer Conrad Keely’s Irish roots.
Throw in a few heartrending piano ballads of Inland Sea’s calibre and you have an album that may not get a perfect score, but reaffirms Trail of Dead’s role as rock’s dark trailblazers.
The Century of Self is released on 23 Feb through Superball Records
…And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead play Oran Mor, Glasgow on 17 April