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Album Review: Death In The Park - Death In The Park

For some this self-titled full-length has been a long time coming; Death In The Park first released material with a self-titled EP in late 2008, and this full-length was expected to be released last year. However 2009 came and went with to little to no word from the band, and with the news that former Hot Rod Circuit frontman Andy Jackson joining Fred Mascherino and co for their new Terrible Things project, it looked even less likely a DITP record would see the light of day.

Nevertheless the full-length has now arrived and for those expecting 10 fresh songs will be disappointed, as half of the songs here have been online for quite some time or appeared on the self-titled EP. Nevertheless for new listeners you're given a good slice of driving pop-rock as opener 'Pitifully Exposed' shows; steady paced guitars and rhythm plays nicely alongside Jackson somewhat distinctive tongue.

One of the highlights is 'Fallen', which this time round is given the full-band treatment and features someone called Hayley Williams from a band called Paramore, who coincidently adds a nice, female tone to the energetic, upbeat track with the helpless "oohs" quickly getting stuck in your head.

'Do You Want Me Now' and 'Laws Of Nature' keep the tempo going and adds consistency to the record, whilst the first new track ('Move To The Beat'') is guided through with Jackson's warm vocals and plucky guitars, and swirling synth keys.

Elsewhere the familiar 'Sway' is bouncy pop-rock track that is worth mentioning but can equally be forgotten about, as it subtly plays on the safe side of the genre. While by the later stages of the album, the band are settled in their own stride and do keep up the standard, but does not measure up to the albums first half. However 'Oh You Know' provides a slow, slightly calm moment with its strings and ballad-esque delivery. Whilst the closing track, 'Walk Away' has been altered slightly since its original release, with the band using Motion City Soundtrack-like keys and mixing it with punching drums and Jackson's near-perfect vocals.

On the whole Death In The Park will please fans of a) Death In The Park (and their earlier EP) and b) Hot Rod Circuit; although some will say this isn't HRC Version 2.0 their characteristics are still there, for example both bands often make good use of their pop sensibilities.

Nonetheless people should not automatically make comparisons to the latter, and give DITP a chance as the ten tracks here show a band, who are refreshed and are looking for a new lease of life in their careers. Whilst this is not suddenly apparent, the records earlier parts are especially favourable and clearly shows Jackson and Co's knowledge of how to write good upbeat, rock songs that you can't help but have on repeat.


'Death In The Park' by Death In The Park is released on August 24th through End Sounds.

Death In The Park on MySpace, iTunes, Twitter, Facebook and Amazon.

Sean Reid

Alter The Press!