Review: “Echoes Of A Dreamless Life” by E.B. & The Deadlights

“We never intended on doing an album, but when the song variety continued to grow and we had the tracks written, separating them just didn’t feel right, both flow and concept wise. I wanted to write something that was both fantastical and horrific—the innocence of Peter Pan Vs the madness of Dracula so to speak.” ~ Ethan Beatie

After a critically acclaimed debut EP in “Still See Ghosts” and shows alongside Priest (ex-Ghost) and horror punk legend Doyle from the legendary Misfits, the bandages on the Mummy once wrapped so tight began to unravel with alarming speed for EB & The Deadlights at the beginning of 2022, in the winter of discontent. Line up changes can be heart-breaking but determined to build on the foundations he had worked so hard for, vocalist Ethan Beatie clenched his fist in defiance and raised a middle finger to the cold barren wastelands that brought him doom and gloom. The strength to not only survive but thrive was found within and he brought in new guitarist and co-writer Macauley Rogers, bassist Maciek Zaworski, and guitarist Reece Mathers and together they began to plot and scheme living well because as everyone knows, it is the best revenge…

…”Still See Ghosts” put EB & The Deadlights on the map with their ability to stitch together styles seamlessly a joy to behold and with just the first song in “Endless Hope” it’s clear that despite the line up changes none of that has been lost. The haunting begins with a sombre piano introduction overlaid by samples with flavours of “A Bullet Named Christ” from Wednesday 13 as the song comes to life. Shaking off the fifty shades of melancholia, the band then reach critical mass with a Horror Punk riff and a bold anthemic chorus, cleverly interweaving spoken word parts to great effect. The influences continue to bleed out on “Falling Away” with hints at Marilyn Manson and Nirvana emanating from a 90’s Alternative Metal anthem that finds Beatie bringing out some uncleans to haul the tune kicking and screaming to the poison well. That bark and bite will turn the heads of fans of the heavier side of Metal, in some ways making the band even more of a guilty pleasure than they already are, the kind of outfit that you can take your non Metal head friends to see live without having to suffer yourself. “Pain That I Need” bleeds from the same vein, an extension of the same sonic ideas with it’s own nuances to make it unique, a cigarette paper between which one you would choose as a single to get the music video treatment. It’s clear why “Heaven Into Hell” got the nod as a single, it’s earworm riff and just part of what makes it insanely catchy, the genre tags lose fitting because this is simply a collection of good songs with a timeless quality to them.

Splitting the album clean in half, the hatchet that is “Hollow Eyes” is a love song with a twist as unexpected as the one in Sixth Sense with My Chemical Romance qualities seeping through the woodwork. “Art Of Death” then dials up the urgency a notch, necking a can of a well known energy drink and dancing with the dead with mosh pit madness. The unclean verse is as monstrous as it is unexpected as Beatie goes feral, the clean vocals over the majority of the record being the backbone upon which the framework of the material is held together, left behind for a fleeting moment of glorious madness. Theatrical flirtations and moments of blues are interwoven into “Kill Your Answers“, an otherwise punchy anthem with plenty of charm but it’s “Fatal Violence” that takes the cake. Laden with bouncy riffs, spoken words crash against screams to create the heaviest and most fun cut on the record. The staccato riff breaks and lead parts are a match made in hell when this collection sometimes sounds like the band could get away with a single guitar, making it a real crowd pleaser for the live arena. The aching 80’s melodies of “Dreamless Life” lean on the bands Gothic influences to offer up a title track that lyrically resonates while being a sing-a-long affair from virtually the first listen. Charming and warm, this is a record that gets under your skin like an infectious disease… [7.5/10]

Track Listing

  1. Endless Hope
  2. Falling Away
  3. Pain That I Need
  4. Heaven Into Hell
  5. Hollow Eyes
  6. Art Of Death
  7. Kill Your Answers
  8. Fatal Violence
  9. Dreamless Life

Echoes Of A Dreamless Life” by E.B. & The Deadlights is out 16th June 2023

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