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Plainride - Life on Ares

Label: Ripple Music
Format: Download
Released: 2018
Reviewed By: Jack Mangan
Rating: 8/10

Who would have thought that the sound of rusted American Southwest Metal would have been captured so perfectly by a band from Cologne, Germany? Plainride have some history under their belt (or maybe not that much. . . .they originated in 2013), but they clearly bow at the altairs of Clutch, Pepper Keenan (both CoC and Down), Zakk Wylde, Fu Manchu, The Sword, et al, alongside bands like Droids Attack, Octopus, Blackwulf, and so on.


This is pretty straightforward, holler-voice gravel, spread over a high-speed freeway of fuzz and hard rock. Their second album, “Life on Ares,” sounds like it’s meant to be played loud in a dusty bar with pool tables, fried onion rings, and Bud specials, off of some interstate in MiddleOfNowhere, America.
The first track is an odd, unnecessary sound FX piece of the cockpit during a plane crash…? On some island somewhere…. With a primitive tribe playing drums…? But the moment the harmonic guitar kicks in on track 2, “El Coyote,” you know you’re in for a special ride. Beyond that, there are some filler tracks to be endured or skipped before the end, but there are also some rewards, like “Bite Back” and “Wormhole Society.” No reward on “Life on Ares” is greater, however, than track 8: “Blood on the Crown.” It has a dynamite piano riff, that provides a bassy, textured undercurrent throughout. It’s a great song on a good album.

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