Rock is far from dead, but even among those trying to keep its core spirit and values alive, there aren’t nearly enough bands making riffage their top priority. The big solos are one thing, but getting back to the thunderous grooves of classic rock and metal acts is going to take a lot more dedication from bands in the underground akin to that of Makes My Blood Dance, whose new single “Sick As Our Secrets” celebrates riffing like few other songs I’ve heard this year. There aren’t any unneeded accents of sophistication here – it’s all brash guitar prowess and lumbering rhythm, the likes of which I need a lot more of heading into the holiday season.
The groove beneath the fretting is rather volatile, but this is required because of how consistent – robotic even – the bassline is. To create as much contrast as possible, Makes My Blood Dance has the backend of the mix going at one pace while the front is doing something almost entirely different; where they meet is within the swing of the chorus. It’s reminiscent of the power metal of yesteryear minus the bombast that the genre’s best acts became known for, and I think that with a little more agility in their tempo, this is a band that could get thrashy and still maintain some melodicism.
There’s truly nothing subtle about the bottom-end textures coming off of the bass part in this track, and I would even argue that the bassline is made a little louder than the guitar parts are in the latter half of the track solely to emphasize the grit binding the drums with the harmony. You’ve got to hand it to Makes My Blood Dance for their attention to detail in this single and what it says about their ethics versus those of their closest rivals.
Lyrically speaking, “Sick As Our Secrets” is probably the simplest and most straightforward track that this band has recorded and released as a single thus far, but I don’t think it’s lacking the substance of something a bit more poetic in nature. Contrarily, I actually believe that this single needed to be cut and dry on the lyrical front to facilitate as brawny a performance from our singer as possible. Forget linguistic intricacies; this is a vocalist who needs room to cut loose like Rob Halford, and he gets all the space he requires in this release.
Rockers around the world have permission to rejoice this late autumn season, as once again the underground heroes in Makes My Blood Dance are setting the standard for both themselves and the other metallic acts coming up in the American indie circuit at the moment. “Sick As Our Secrets” is angst-ridden and a little dirty where it counts the most, and while it’s probably not going to be the last song of note this band records in their time together, it caps off their 2021 on a resoundingly high note no matter the angle you’re breaking it down from.
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