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Christian Music - Reviews, News, Interviews

New Medicines

  • reviewed by Andy Argyrakis Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2004 1 Mar
New Medicines
Sounds like … a mix of hardcore (Zao, Project 86), melodic alternative (Stavesacre, Emery), and the heavy music of HelmetAt a glance … these once-exclusively hard rockers have incorporated a more melodic and comprehensible feel on this MTV-friendly setTrack ListingTaste the Red HandsThe Dream Club MurdersNew MedicinesVanus EmptyBury the DifferenceMolotovGlass in the TreesDimmer LightHostagesModern Morbid PropheciesA Hoax to Live For

Coming straight out of high school and hopping into the recording studio may not have been the best move for explosive quintet Dead Poetic. Their debut, 2002's Four Wall Blackmail, got MTV2 buzz, and they landed tour dates with Zao and Stavesacre. But the band didn't show as much cohesiveness and completeness as it does on New Medicines.

A refined playing ability is one of the most obvious improvements, along with a desire to dig beyond an exclusively hardcore crunch. Much of this development stems from frontman Brandon Rike's more mature vocals, backed by the band's melodic and accessible support. The new fusion rises with burning highs on cuts like "Taste the Red Hands" and "Vanus Empty," and pounds hard with gravely lows on "Bury the Difference" and "Hostages."

The most radio-ready tracks include "Dimmer Light" and "The Dream Club Murders," a pair loaded with driving upsurges and full-blown vocal urgency. On the lyrical front, the harrowing finale "A Hoax To Live For" is the disc's most meaningful track, tracing Satan's deceptive hand in a fallen society. Those consistent examples of change and growth signal New Medicines as Dead Poetic's proper graduation into alternative rock ranks and a pattern that may lead to its influence on the underclassmen to come.