...And You Will Know Us By the Trail of Dead - The Century of Self

A work of Himalayan scale

Album Review by Nick Mitchell | 06 Feb 2009
  • ...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead – The Century of Self
Album title: The Century of Self
Artist: ...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead
Label: Superball
Release date: 23 Feb

Things haven’t gone so well for experimental Texan rockers ...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead. Last album So Divided was leaked a month before its release, they parted company with label Interscope, and if Wikipedia is to be believed, guitarist Kevin Allen was arrested on New Year’s Eve for destroying a Guitar Hero set-up in a bar after "failing to achieve a perfect score".

But some artists thrive on misfortune, and Trail of Dead are no exceptions. Always known for pushing further in one song than some bands do in a career, The Century of Self is a work of Himalayan scale. Far Pavilions takes us back to punky Madonna territory before slowing to a stately chorus and scatterbomb drums, while Isis Unveiled, a caterwauling Celtic reel, pays heed to singer Conrad Keely’s Irish roots.

Throw in a few heartrending piano ballads of Inland Sea's calibre and you have an album that may not get a perfect score, but reaffirms Trail of Dead’s role as rock’s dark trailblazers. [Nick Mitchell]

Trail of Dead play Òran Mór, Glasgow on 17 Apr.