Album Review: Dog Eat Dog – Free Radicals

Album Review: Dog Eat Dog – Free Radicals
Reviewed by Rick Eaglestone

Pioneers of the Crossover over genre Dog Eat Dog take a break from touring and return with their first studio album in 17 years – Free Radicals

2023 is turning into the year of comebacks with Kittie once again making waves in the metal world with new material, Dog Eat Dog have never really been out of the live circuit and with next year being the (gulp) 30th anniversary for an album that has been my go-to since the age of 15 All Boro Kings It’s with a great sense of nostalgia I throw myself straight back to the present day for this new offering.

Opener ‘Lit Up’ is quite frankly comes with a sigh of relief as it’s quintessential Dog Eat Dog, Big Riffs, catchy choruses but the harmonies most certainly have a modern blend to them which is a really nice addition and as the sweeping moments of ‘Kin’ a particular highlight btw as John Connor’s vocals really portray the family vibe and positive mental attitude – trust me this is a track which will pull you out of any foul mood and give you a better outlook for the day, this is paired with ‘Never Give In’ which once again has a strong unity vibe but my word it is littered with wave upon wave of early 00’s nu metal – which is in no way a criticism as it’s actually a period of time I have found myself delving back to in recent times.

Album Review: Dog Eat Dog – Free Radicals

‘The 1Thing’ changes the dynamic of the album with a slower, chilled soundscape and demonstrating the bands collective diverse musical influences and with the track ‘Mean Str’ featuring a verse from Rudeboy demonstrates the band’s ability to still explore and create boundaries. This followed by a short, sharp shot of adrenaline for the aptly named ‘Energy Rock’ which almost has an electronic feel embedded in a foundation of punk and hardcore.

‘Joe’s’ sees a welcome to form with the hip hop heartbeat, sadly no sax but plenty of storytelling and solos which is complemented with the albums most rapid track ‘Blvk Clvd’. New territory is explored for the albums most surprising track ‘Bar Down’ is slow and stripped back which really highlights the maturity as musicians it has a strong undercurrent of emotiveness that I particularly enjoyed. Serving up a slice of nostalgia ‘Mans Best Friend’ has some really nice funk and groove parts which blends effortlessly with the prominent basslines and drum patters on ‘E1on1’.

The first of the final two tracks ‘Looking Back’ almost serves as a retrospective and concluding track ‘Zamboni’ is so completely left field that it feels like a different album but honestly the tones and dynamics that run through Free Radicals this track is nothing else completely captures the aesthetic of something that has had the feel of an absolute labour of love.

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