Darwin And The Dinosaur

Darwin and The Dinosaur open their L.P. “A Thousand Ships” in explosive fashion with the song “Theories”. It grabs you by the throat and almost chokes you! The clear, crisp vocal is matched by the heavy bass. It’s fast-paced in places with a strong, frenetic drumbeat. The chord changes in the bridge keep it interesting before the power hitting returns-it’s a great opener. “Anchors Away” is the first of a few acoustic interludes “peppered” about the L.P., before they lurch back to the full electric of “Making Friends With Strangers”. The clangy guitar part is matched by James’s “crunchy” bass, while the passionate vocal delivery sits alongside the soft/heavy elements of the song. But it’s the great middle 8 and the song ending that are the “show-stealers” here!

“Life At Sea” carries on the “interlude” part of the L.P. and there’s a nuatical theme to boot! “Make Believe” is really more of the same. Vocal changes aplenty, some intricate picking and more heartfelt lyrics. At a risk of repeating myself we are treated to another great middle 8, before the equally great ending! “Riff Town Population-You” is by far the most interesting song title on this collection. A noodly intro, followed by a harsh, angry vocal. Big hitting again from Joe (drums), amid some crunchy guitar riffs this time. A quieter, softer bridge this time allows a gentle build-up back into the power-and then it ends!

Darwin And The Dinosaur

“Women and Children” is “interlude round 3” – another short trip down “acousticity lane”! “Hand in Hand” returns to the hard ‘n’ fast of what this collection is mainly about. A more clinical and audible vocal amongst all the other elements. For once (the drums aside), the middle 8 is a tad noodly and overlong for this reviewer’s liking; but to summise, it’s a great big powerhouse of a song.

“Buried in Smoke” is the last acoustic break and penultimate track before the explosion of sound that is final cut “Change of Heart”. With strong guitars and hard hitting from the outset; the passionate, personal lyrics keep with the intensity. In my humble opinion (for what it’s worth) they’ve saved the best til’ last. There’s some rather fine military-esque drumming keeping things fresh in the middle, before those strong chords kick in once more. The song ending is great – I just wish there were more songs like it on this collection.

As for putting four acoustic tracks on here, it’s a brave move when one would have been enough. Fair play to them but it smacks of a band with either too many songs for an E.P. or not enough “killer” tunes for a full L.P. Either way, as debut’s go it’s a decent effort for a band who are competing in a “crowded market”. Many bands of this genre have fallen by the wayside and only time will tell if DATD make the breakthrough, so I wish them well.

Line Up
Alan Hiom – Guitar + Vocals
Steve Larke – Guitar + Vocals
James Bates – Bass
Joe Mears – Drums

Track Listing
Anchors Aweigh
Making Friends With Strangers
Life At Sea
Make Believe
Riff Town Population-You
Women and Children
Hand In Hand
Buried In Smoke
Change Of Heart


Review by Ross A. Ferrone.

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