Nottingham Alternative Rockers The Dead Souls bring their no-frills approach to the forefront of ‘Coma’ in what can only be described as a 90’s Alternative revival for the next generation.
‘Coma’ opens with ‘Points of Entry,’ its distorted riffs and overall musicality echoing a Grunge era that hasn’t been seen or heard since the mid-90’s. The instrumentation is raw and stripped down, though, what it lacks in complexity, it more than makes up for in power. This high-energy output sets the tone for Vocalist Michael Preston to showcase his gritty, rasping inflections, a seamless fit that (when merged with the distortion) creates a wall of sound that is as thick as it is heavy.
‘Someday,Something’ further drives home the nail that was first hammered by ‘Points of Entry.’ Preston’s vocals bear a striking resemblance to that of Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder – which, by and large is understating it considerably. As a listener, it would be very easy to mistake this for a Pearl Jam track. While it’s solid in its own right, one may be left to wonder if such imitation (while being the sincerest form of flattery) could prove to be a detriment.
The album progresses with the same hardcore punk, heavy metal, and indie rock elements that served as the building blocks for Grunge. ‘Coma’ is the sort of revival record that will appeal to fans of the genre (whether you wear flannel and ripped jeans or otherwise). It is also likely to attract new fans that missed out on the opportunity to experience Grunge in its heyday, breathing new life into it for the modern era.
While it would be very easy for critics to pan this record as simply a carbon copy attempting to cash in on a bygone era well past its prime, ‘Coma’ offers far more than a mere replica. While nothing will ever truly capture the angst, emotion, and atmosphere like the real thing, The Dead Souls are as close to the real thing as one can hope to get. The Dead Souls have managed to wake Grunge out of its “coma” (something that hasn’t been achieved since it was induced in the mid-90’s) proving that (contrary to their namesake and the widely accepted consensus on the genre) both The Dead Souls and Grunge are very much alive.