Home Read Albums Of The Week: Dead Tired | Satan Will Follow You Home

Albums Of The Week: Dead Tired | Satan Will Follow You Home

When Alexisonfire is your second-heaviest band, you’re clearly not fooling around — as George Pettit hammers home on this expansive sophomore set from his hardcore crew.

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THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: The latest self-produced full-length offering from the band fronted by Alexisonfire vocalist George Pettit, Satan Will Follow You Home is a crushing 10-track collection that’s both beautifully orchestrated and cathartically chaotic. Says Pettit, “Satan Will Follow You Home is Dead Tired without the training wheels, no helmet, going off a ramp made of machetes into a piranha tank filled with pepper spray … also there’s a saxophone part in one of the songs.”

“I think we’re really stepping into our own sound with this one,” says guitarist Franz Stefanik. “When we first started, we didn’t really have any goals or ambitions other than playing music and having fun, but things are starting to feel more serious and everyone’s really excited about that. Our writing is evolving and we’re starting to wear our influences on our sleeves a bit more.”

Dead Tired’s unrelenting musical onslaught is best defined by way of contrasts and contradictions, existing in the ether between opposing forces and foiling ideas. Satan Will Follow You Home spans a more expansive sonic spectrum than anything we’ve heard from the quintet, comprised of Stefanik, fellow guitarist Marco Bressette, bassist Nick Ball, Pettit and new drummer Theo McKibbon. Its elevated production quality embraces ears like a warm hug, only to then hit like a string of haymakers straight to the chest.

“We really dove into the production on this one,” Stefanik explains, noting the freedom they had to experiment sonically while recording at their Hamilton HQ — dubbed The Deadquarters — with Bressette, a decorated engineer and producer, at the controls. “We spent more time going through different guitar, amp, and pedal setups and getting everything mic’d properly than we did actually tracking, and I think it shows.”

That’s not to say they’ve strayed from the chaotic and combustible energy of their earlier work; instead, they’ve distilled it, made it exponentially more potent, and used it as an anchor to go off and explore increasingly ambitious styles and sounds. Atop a solid foundation inspired by early Converge and Cave-In, Kyuss and Dead Kennedys, we get everything from sickly saxophone licks to stacked vocal harmonies.

Opener Predatory Loans offers an absolute pummeling of anger and aggression, tapping into the heightened social, economic, and political unrest engulfing a growing percentage of the globe. Tracks like Breakfast of Participants and New World Pigs are a perfect storm of pure and powerful punk rock while the title track wraps its intensity in swirling atmospherics for a slower, sludgier, but no less urgent experience.

The band yearns to get back to bludgeoning fans with their blazing, hard-hitting live shows — something that Stefanik says weighed heavily on their minds while recording thanks to the global pandemic that forced them into a temporary holding pattern. “That felt like such a big defeat,” he adds, “so making this album became our distraction, and a great motivator to keep our creativity and lives going.”

Needless to say, they’re keen for their return to any stage that’ll have them, from major international festivals to the crammed clubs that first confirmed they were onto something special back in 2014. “It feels so good to have new material, a new lineup, and the excitement that comes with being able to play shows again,” Stefanik says. “We’re stoked to have relit that spark to the point that, really, this feels like an entirely new band.”

A group of well-seasoned scene veterans dropping a career-defining record, reinvigorated with the vivacity of a new band? Yet another example of Dead Tired thriving in a place between opposites, adhering to no set agenda or rules outside of their own.”