Sludgy-sounding, ’70’s-influenced barroom guitar bands are a dime a dozen these days, and for every one that interprets the style well (Black Crowes) there are 20 others (Silvertide, Tantric, Jet, etc.) serving up half-assed, blandly inoffensive crap disguised as rock ’n’ roll. This album places Dirty Americans solidly among the latter. The band’s racket isn’t thick or soulful enough to channel an act like Big Chief, and isn’t spacey enough to run with groups like Monster Magnet; as such, the songs tend to congeal like a poorly molded lump of musical Play-Doh. To be fair, the album does have a surprising run of decent songs; “Burn You Down” and “Time in Space” are sneakily catchy, while the band churns out a respectable pseudo-stoner rock stomp in “Dead Man.” Unfortunately, said songs are smothered in a stew of pedestrian songwriting. For a Detroit rock ’n’ roll combo with such an audacious name, where’s the dirt, the guts, the glory? Ultimately, this record shows the Dirty Americans in the worst light possible for a rock band: not terrible enough to make fun of, but not good enough to take seriously.
Gary Blackwell writes about music for Metro Times. Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.
Email us at email@example.com.
Detroit Metro Times works for you, and your support is essential.
Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Detroit and beyond.
Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.
Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Detroit's true free press free.