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Dirty Rats - End In Tears

Dirty Rats
End In Tears
by Mike McMahan at 30 December 2020, 8:40 PM

You have to respect a band like DIRTY RATS, if for no other reason, their staying power and resolve to make solid Rock N’ Roll music is incredible. The band was originally formed in Melbourne, Australia in 1982 by bassist Jamie Beovich. The band were “Beer Hall Heroes” through the eighties, playing four to five shows per week. They released a few EPs during this period; but failed to gain any level of fame or notoriety outside their native land. They released their first full length record, 2018’s “Rock N Roll”, to solid critical praise; after numerous lineup changes through the years. The follow up, “End In Tears” was released on the 13th of December of this year, and doesn’t really leave room for much guess work. Through the thirteen-song track list, there isn’t a lot of variety to be found. The band draws influence from such sources as the legendary AC/DC and ROSE TATTOO, with a healthy dose of a Punk-like delivery in spots; a little Lemmy Kilmister and MOTORHEAD in others. You kind of get what you get with this bunch, and they offer no apologies for it.

“The Juice” opens up the album on that very sentiment. The song is raw boned, hard and heavy to the core, with Gibson guitar ablaze and the bourbon soaked vocal on full display. It is a simplistic and cliched niche, but it works. I got the feeling that the music here was only an extension of dues paid in loud and smoky bars over the last 38 years or so. The guitar work, while nothing extraordinary, is very solid, as is the rhythm section. Vocalist Rich has a mildly threatening delivery about him, and on this cut in particular, you can hear the influence from Lemmy very strongly.

The remainder of the album offers more of the same. “Axis Of Love” has a tasty blues inspired guitar riff intro, while digging a little deeper into the record, “Hurts Like A Mother” has elements that feel like something RAMONES may have left behind years ago. The highlight of the record for me was a lyric on the closing track, the blues fueled “Rock Star” (which resembled the AC/DC staple “Ride On” so closely I thought they might be covering it, at first):

“I know I’m not a rock star, babe
And I hope that you don’t care
Cause I ain’t got any money
And I ain’t got any hair”

There is nothing new to see here, but if you get the genre, you’ll get these cats. As for the hair? Fuck it. Who needs it anyway?

Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. The Juice
2. Axis Of Love
3. Love From A Distance
4. End In Tears
5. Jaded
6 .The Ballad Of Hobbit Foot
7. Hurts Like A Mother
8. Boss Of Me
9. My Life Is A Cliché
10. Fantasy
11. Bad News Woman
12. Rat Rock
13. Rock Star
Lineup:
Jamie Beovich - Bass
Wayne Rich - Vocals
Anthony “Chooka” Chapple - Guitar
Andy Thomson - Drums
Record Label: Sliptrick Records
     


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