The Midlands Rocks
for everything that ROCKS across the Midlands, UK
The Midlands Rocks

The Treatment – Running With The Dogs

Review by Brian McGowan

Spinefarm Records

Six years to write the first album, six months to write the second. Is it any wonder so many follow up albums are pale imitations of the debut? So what went right here? Running With The Dogs is streets ahead of 2012’s This Might Hurt, and that wasn’t too shabby. We don’t need no CIS to conclude what the evidence tells us… touring with Kiss and Motley Crue in 2012 has had a huge influence on the band… both in the sense of songwriting and performance. Mix in their love of Legacy Rock – ELO, Slade, and obscurities like JoJo Gunne and Canned Heat – and you’ll end up with… well, Running With The Dogs.

It’s nothing if not full blooded, brim-full of snarling, swaggering riffs, stretched tight and holding taut throughout an album of well-crafted songs and down to the wire delivery, unquestionably a more confident and elaborate piece than This Might Hurt, a sign of a band more at ease with its influences and direction. The album launches with ‘I Bleed Rock&Roll’, more a belief system than a statement of intent, tuning us in to the scorching, three chord fire made popular by the giants of Oz Rock.

And so it continues, throughout, the music and words aiming to strike like lightning. ‘Drop Like A Stone’ and ‘The Outlaw’ are hard bodied, hard rock tracks of such fervour and intensity, that when they finish, you’ll check yourself for burns and bruises. ‘Emergency’ nods a respectful head in several directions…Kiss, Def Leppard, The Angels, whipping up an unrestrained sound that defies the straitjacket of the studio, a band clearly at home integrating classic stylings into their own singular brand.

It’s also clear that the bulk of the album is made up of road tested, battle hardened songs, teased and tweaked into a sound so impeccably imperious that they are just impossible to deny (‘I Bleed Rock&Roll’, ‘Get The Party On’ and ‘Emergency’ featured on their Ozfest Setlist last year). And yet, the real trick with Running With The Dogs is the way they keep the machinery of genre to a low, background hum. Just when you expect it to roar into life, it doesn’t, instead a song will bloom into an expansive chorus (‘She’s Too Much’ ‘World On Fire’), or they’ll put their foot on the ball with a sublime ballad (‘Cloud Across The Sun’, ‘Unchain My World’), sending us all the wrong way, before accelerating into another match winning chorus. Yes, it moves in the general direction of rock conventionality, but there are no uneasy compromises, and the songs and melodies are constantly inventive. Unsurprisingly, the WWW is already awash with superlatives. Highly Recommended.

The Treatment - Running With The Dogs9 out of 10

Track Listing:

  1. I Bleed Rock&Roll
  2. Drop Like A Stone
  3. Get The party On
  4. Running With The Dogs
  5. The Outlaw
  6. Emergency
  7. She’s Too Much
  8. Cloud Across The Sun
  9. Don’t Look Down
  10. World On Fire
  11. What Is There To Say
  12. Unchain My World
  13. Don’t Get Mad Get Evil

 

 

Share

Tags:

RSSComments (1)

Leave a Reply | Trackback URL

  1. Peter says:

    Love this Brian. Yes definite nods to the past while taking it forward for a younger generation.

    Good work.