Review: “Memes And Dreams” by Vaughanstrosity

After ages of playing in bands and writing, I decided to strike out on my own in the hope of creating a new wave of party metal. I’m looking to navigate the metal seas to find home on an unclaimed patch of land.” ~ Ruaidhri Houston

Having cut his teeth playing with a raft of up-and-coming bands and more recently as bassist for highly praised Belfast shock rockers, So Long Until The Séance, multi instrumentalist Ruaidhri Houston felt the itch to scratch regions hitherto untouched. Vaughanstrosity was birthed as an outlet for his artistic talents, lyrically drawing inspiration from graphic novels and inane movies while musically Don Broco and Devin Townsend to Shaina Twain and Kasbo

For “Memes And Dreams” Houston is joined by Nømadus drummer Brett Martin, perhaps the only man capable of following the vision of the project. Loosely in the Party Metal bracket “fl0w” brings the big riffs and sing-a-long chorus qualities that make for a punchy anthemic opener, the combination of pointed unclean phrasings between longer clean sung passages giving it mass appeal in Alternative Metal marketplace. Bouncy and tight with an American accented style it’s a sure-fire winner with a message about changing your ways for a better day, bejewelled by programming and synths to make it sound more positive than the lyrical narrative actually offers. Echoing the sentiment of the opening cut “Friday Night” brings forth the tale of a a broken relationship with a Pop Punk Metal vibe. Keys bolster the sound while a vicious chorus and heavier parts give it bounce and aggression that match the mood while throwing back to Fearless Records releases of yesteryear. Entertaining and thoughtful its actually surprisingly clever. The obvious single is “When The Party Ends” which finds Houston joined by Ethan Beattie of E.B. And The Deadlights on a cut that satisfies with a sing Vs scream style and begs for a stripped back alternative acoustic version. The lyrical narrative is one that will resonate with anyone who has suffered from a broken heart, you know your lover is about to leave you but you’re not ready despite knowing those final words remain just seconds away. Let’s just have one more drink, one more kiss and then you can go and leave me to my misery. It’s a powerful statement piece of song writing which confirms just what Houston is capable of and could give this project a very bright future should he flesh out to a full band and Kerrang! Magazine offer some assistance. An Andrew WK inspired cut “Empty Hearts And Broken Bottles” could easily be Ireland’s entry in the Eurovision Song Contest. One that doesn’t bore us by being all chorus it will get those fists pumping and everyone off the floor with its Dance Pop Metal vibes [7.5/10]

Track Listing

  1. Fl0w
  2. Friday Night
  3. When The Party Ends (ft. Ethan Beattie of E.B. And The Deadlights)
  4. Empty Hearts And Broken Bottles

Memes And Dreams” by Vaughanstrosity is out 27th January 2023

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