‘Modern Ruin’ is the second album by Frank Carter and the Rattlesnakes and it’s a tenacious record, with deep descending fuzz on the overdrive of the guitars and a drum beat that refuses to relent. A mixture of punk and hard rock. The sonic barrage of both hedonistic guitar, and Frank’s rasping and ghostly vocals allows this album to slip amongst your self-conscience and elicit something more than was expected. ‘Modern Ruin’ is a far cry from his debut release ‘Blossoms’, however there’s still plenty of venom spitting from those Rattlesnakes.
The album’s lead single ‘Lullaby’, an ode to his daughter, sees the band take on heavy alt rock, as they battle to bridge to the gap between the genre and hardcore punk. The distorted, repetitive riff by guitarist Dean Richardson packs a punch interwoven with the anguished vocals that come, incredibly unexpected.
Songs like ‘Snake Eyes’ with a predominantly indie feel with occasional snarls of aggression, it wouldn’t be out of place on Arctic Monkeys’ debut and ‘Wild Flowers’ takes an almost indie rock approach with a groove and brooding riffs that bubble with an energy that you feel is ready to explode.
The harder edge of the band is heard in ‘Vampires’, mysterious with an identical melody line from the guitar and vocals. ‘God Is My Friend’ has a hook that delivers before the building pace leaves you salivating for the eventual drop, a slightly more cautious approach is evident on this track but the latter part lets the punk vigor come to the fore and explode in aggressive riffs and snarling Carter.
The second half of ‘Modern Ruin’ sees the heavier approach return with tracks ‘Jackals’ and ‘Real Life’ where we hear deep emotion. ‘Acid Veins’ feels like a painful plight of emotion with lead singer Frank Carter bleeding out his soul, possibly detailing the pains of heartbreak. The Rattlesnakes smash out the aggressive riffs that marry brilliantly with the snarling vocals of Carter throughout these three tracks.
The penultimate track and the album’s title track ‘Modern Ruin’ is the heaviest piece on the album with a ferocious fray of toxic riffs, coupled with almost out of control vocals. The lyrical content lures us into a reflective state of mind, being present in the moment, of someone subconsciously losing their mind. It captivates the listener, with a sense of the unknown, reminding us it’s ok to lose our shit every now and then, to find ourselves.
Album closer ‘Neon Rust’ is a real special moment; it consistently builds throughout and bursts into a moment of madness with Carter screaming “We all belong in a wasteland”. The lyrics are repeated for emphasis and really strike a chord, altering later to “you don’t belong in a wasteland” The perfect encore to any live show, and if you’re North East based you should probably head to Riverside, Newcastle on 18th March 2017 to experience it for real.
‘Modern Ruin’ will open Frank Carter and The Rattlesnakes up to a whole new audience. It is an album of material integrity and musical brilliance; we expect nothing less from this band. Carter has gently changed his style and shown his true talents as a songwriter throughout. This is a band who aren’t afraid to show their individuality; Carter is nothing but consistent in his brutal honesty, he shows his musical ability is at its peak right now and the rattlesnakes are here to stay.