Review: “You Got Me All F***ed Up” by Deez Nuts

If you look at it there are a fair amount of comparisons you could make between Alex Erin and JJ Peters. They both might come from opposite ends of the Globe with Peters hailing from Australia and Erin from Canada but they both have a similar look facially with baseball caps and designer stubble. They both came from heavier bands with Erin stepping away from Deathcore pioneers Despised Icon to create Hardcore Punks Obey The Brave while Peters moved from heavy end Metalcore titans I Killed The Prom Queen to form Deez Nuts. Both new projects are several albums down the line and both started out heavier and mellowed out, embracing more clean vocals showcasing greater range and less aggression, despite their hardcore fan bases wanting the return to roots. Obey The Brave addressed their style shift with their last album “Balance”, bringing back more of what the fans wanted into the sound of the new material. Deez Nuts however seem to have struggled with their identity following their first three albums. They didn’t really capitalise on huge single “Band of Brothers” that features Architects frontman Sam Carter and while both following albums had moments, they felt a little bit flat and lacking the energy, feisty nature and quality of the earlier carrier material.

After the hard hitting opening singles of the last album “Binge & Purgatory”, which showed serious promise for fans of the bands heavier side, you might have expected Deez Nuts to continue that vibe. Well you couldn’t be more wrong. In the build up Peters spoke of a style shift and “Singalong” brings that to the table from the start. Changing the guitars to a less abrasive tone and embracing a cringe worthy Punk Rock chorus. It manages to have enough bite in the remainder of the track to keep it together but alarm bells are ringing. Title track “You Got Me All F***ed Up” cuts back to a more Hardcore Punk sound with some Metal influenced riffs and fortunately the clean vocal parts are much improved this time out. The breakdown sections a more than welcome stompy addition. Single “Crooked Smile” derails the train with a Comeback Kid inspired punk rock track that is so far away from anything Deez Nuts have done before that you’d struggle to pick it out from any generic American Commercial Punk Rock band.

The ironically titled “You Got To Feel Me” is vaguely amusing because it’s not one that has that much feel to it. A standard set of Hardcore Punk riffs during a brag laiden verse is destroyed by a clean sung chorus and some more commercial real estate. You could point at some slick production and how well it’s put together, but it’s all been done before time and time again by US bands so there is nothing new here. Bouncing back to some heavier riffs with a rap vocal that Peters delivers in a nostalgic throwback “On Some Sh*t” is one of the stand out cuts on the album. Peters talks of depression and feeling numb over music which sounds streets ahead of the rest off the album at this point. The bass solo and some stuccato riffage are nicely done. Starting out with Hip-Hop inspired horns “DTDFL4EVA” becomes another bragging, territory marking track with a sung chorus that works far better than it does on the singles. There is more depth the the vocals, the balance to the riffs is far better and the seamless switching between the styles is how you might have hoped that the style shift as a whole would go. “Fools Gold” seems to be an anti industry affair with a rage against those who promise much and deliver little. It may lack enough bite to draw blood but it still packs enough punch to be engaging and enjoyable.

Taking influence from Pantera in the riffage “Axe To Grind” grooves along nicely with a classic 90s feel before a breakneck speed verse inspired by crossover Thrash that makes the track the second real stand out moment on the album. It’s light years away from the opening track. “Get A Grip” falls back into the commercial punk rock with the chorus after starting off solidly enough. It’s a tale of two songs being sandwiched together with no filling so the good is decent and the bad is just… “Bitterest End” is another Comeback Kid inspired track that falls apart in the chorus like a soaking wet paper towel. While the post chorus has a kick to it, the lack of any desire to sing-a-long to the clean chorus means you’re going to switch off faster than when your Mum walks into the room and you’re watching Porn. Whether the album has been created with experimental material to see where the bands future might go, as a whole the album doesn’t fit together and while a couple of tracks do stand out, none of them were selected as singles. It’s not the train wreck that the singles threatened it to be but this doesn’t bode well for old school Deez Nuts fans [5/10]

Track listing

  1. Singalong
  2. You Got Me All F***ed Up
  3. Crooked Smile
  4. You Gotta Feel Me
  5. On Some Sh*t
  7. Fools Gold
  8. Axe To Grind
  9. Get A Grip
  10. Bitterest End

“You Got Me All F***ed Up” by Deez Nuts is out now via Century Media


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