THE DAMNED THINGS - High Crimes
April 22, 2019, a month ago
Back in 2010, Anthrax guitarists Scott Ian and Rob Caggiano joined forces with Every Time I Die vocalist Keith Buckley, as well as Fall Out Boy guitarist Joe Trohman and drummer Andy Hurley in a really cool side project, The Damned Things. Their highly successful debut album, Ironiclast, earned the band an opening slot on Volbeat’s North American tour. Now, nine years later, The Damned Things – minus Caggiano, who currently plays in Volbeat – along with new bassist Dan Adriano of Alkaline Trio, have released their second studio effort, High Crimes.
Produced by Jay Ruston (Anthrax, Stone Sour, Amon Amarth), High Crimes boasts ten songs, spear-headed by the first single and hilarious video, “Cells”. Straight to the point with an undeniable punk overtone, this serves as a great introduction to newcomers, and a hearty welcome back for those of us privy to the first go-round.
The unnecessary cheerleader chants that permeate “Something Good” are forgiven once the luscious chorus appears. “Invincible” is no-frills, juke box rock. “Omen” rotates around quirky surprises from both the six and four string. “Carry A Brick” is chaotic but not crazed. Conversely, “Storm Charmer” is decidedly different, showcasing multiple tempos and several personalities. “Young Hearts” brings back the aggressive riff ‘n roll that is the foundation of The Damned Things. “Keep Crawling” is noisier, “Let Me Be (Your Girl)” gets the blood pumping musically; and stimulates the mind with a terrific set of lyrics. Going out on a rager, The Damned Things knock it all down during “The Fire Is Cold”.
Admittedly, High Crimes isn’t the quick climax that Ironiclast was. Nothing is as immediate as “We’ve Got A Situation Here”, or “Handbook For The Recently Deceased”. CD number two requires a little courtship before the clothes hit the floor. Take the time, give it multiple listens, and this ear candy will leave you huffing and puffing, looking for a repeat performance.