Red Dead Roadkill is a hard rock band from Hamburg in Germany and, apparently, started out as a death metal band called Roadkill before morphing into the new version with the only musician surviving the transition being singer and guitarist Bob Lee. He soon brought on-board powerhouse female vocalist RAADD, fellow guitarist Dean Harper, Sazzy O on bass and the rather appropriately named Crash on drums. There are elements of Goth and indie in the music but hard rock is the major component with hard hitting riffs and a good deal of thrashing guitars but there is an abundance of subtlety too it and it is this that raises the band above the ordinary.
The band scores very highly due to the thrilling and heartfelt vocals of RAADD and she is a great focal point for the group too as she focuses the energy that the band creates so sublimely. The two guitars make for a heavy and crunching sound with the drums and bass pounding out a beat that is relentless. RAADD takes virtually all of the vocal leads but Bob Lee gives remarkable support with his hard and dirty vocals, not death growls by any means but heading that way, and when the sweet and dark vocals combine they become very special indeed and I am not a fan of the growled vocal at all but it works perfectly here and simply makes so much sense.
The music follows the pattern set by bands like Within Temptation, Delain and Evanescence but Red Dead Roadkill probably has more cross-over appeal as they do rock heavy and hard. The band looks good too and they seem to have that certain ‘je ne sais quoi’ that bodes well for their future. There is a great deal of melody in their delivery and the stunning ballad Somewhere, Mr Fate, is an absolute stunner and given the right promotion could be a huge hit across Europe. Based on the quality of this fully formed and perfect debut then I suspect that Red Dead Overkill is another name that we are going to see quite a lot of in the future. The album was mixed and mastered by a certain Roland Grapow and he knows a thing or two about rock bands and if they are good enough for him then they are good enough for me; he even features on the track Dying Day giving further validation.
It was only after writing this that I noticed that the album was recorded in 2018 and vocalist RAADD has subsequently left the band, being replaced by another female with the name of Redness and she will feature on the planned second album. It will be interesting to see how the band copes with the departure of RAADD and what Redness can bring with her.
Sweet Songs Of Anguish track list
- Unleash The Beast (4:28)
- Lines Of Fire (2:58)
- Hail To The King (4:41)
- Cold (5:09)
- Headlights (3:36)
- Good Night (3:49)
- Somewhere, Mr Fate (4:18)
- Pretty In Silence (5:23)
- Thorns Below (3:43)
- Dying Day (feat. Roland Grapow) (5:08)
- Songs Of Anguish (5:05)
- Under Water (4:16)