Album Review: Dead Leaves – Vultures

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Dead Leaves

Vultures - Take This To Heart Records

The trio that makes up Dead Leaves openly acknowledge their debt to the Cleveland punk scene that both spawned and supported two of the members, Elliot Blair and Alex Tucker, previous outfit, Call It Fiction. As Dead Leaves were formed after they met their third member, Gene Bernardo, when they played a show at his house, then it’s clear that their roots are well and truly embedded in their local punk scene. Vultures follows on from Dead Leaves self titled debut EP and is released today on all formats via Take This To Heart Records.

Death And Taxes starts Vultures out in a mellow manner that kicks up a gear at the midway point, although the album maintains a restrained punk vibe that falls somewhere between folk punk and punk rock. The enchanting Sunrise carries the feel of fifties rock ‘n roll ballad whilst Hopeless Dweller brings the tempo down with an impassioned number, and at the halfway point Vultures kicks into life with a Bloodshot. The flip side of Vultures repeats the pattern of the first handful of tracks, including the stunning track Die Young, that build up the tempo and incorporate elements of punk rock, rock ‘n roll, indie and folk punk to impressive effect.

Vultures is an album that focuses on the exploitation of powerlessness and vulnerability, making the album’s title a poignant one, and the style of this debut full length suits the nature of the material perfectly. Vultures contains all the elements that were present on their impressive debut EP, but everything has more depth making Vultures an impressive step forward for the band, albeit one that has had a long incubation period since the bands debut EP was released back in 2014. In Vultures the Dead Leaves have delivered an album that shows that the long wait, and the painstaking writing process that was involved in the creation of their debut full length, was worth the wait.

Vultures can be ordered on CD, vinyl and digital formats via Take This To Heart Records here