Washington D.C. outfit Us & Them have burst onto the music scene by booking their place on the ICE festival in America, alongside high flying alternative rock bands such as August Burns Red, Attack Attack!, Close Your Eyes and letlive. following the release of their debut album. So, you wouldn’t be mistaken for thinking this is a band who may be onto a winner with their pretty unique sound.
Right from the get-go, ‘Adventures Into The Dark’ is a catchy collision of genres. Michael Miller has a very distinctive voice, sounding a bit like a punk version of Ronnie Radke, but transmitting sharp blasts of emotive aggression throughout. Us & Them may still be finding their ideal sound, with pop-punk, hardcore and metal elements visible throughout this album, however this does sound very, very crisp, and very collective. No-one is a passenger, as Antonio Rucci, Josh Green and Scott Bailey command the string section perfectly, with almost Dragonforce-esque riffs at times (particularly in ‘Secrets Never Fail’), and Matthew Horsen on the drums is unfaultable.
At their lightest, in songs such as ‘Living A Lie’, Us & Them tend to sound a bit similar to My Passion, particularly Miller‘s vocals, which seem to be probably the most versatile you could ever hope to hear on a debut album. ‘A Lost Cause’ and ‘Drifter’ are the two more stand-out songs on offer here, however, ‘Peace Not Greed’ will appease almost any ear, sounding pretty much unlike anything you have ever heard before.
Overall, this is a brilliant first outing for Us & Them, and it’s pretty hard to believe that this is a band nowhere near their potential peak, producing a solid and consistent debut album as versatile as this one. Nine songs, and not one of them will disappoint anyone going into this album with an open-mind. Us & Them are without a doubt a band on the rise.
Written by Gary Cassidy
Founder & Editor for DEAD PRESS!