You Take the High Road and I’ll Take the Dead Road
Sometimes there’s safety in numbers. This has long been the stratagem of the split release. It’s a great tactic: double the chance of name recognition, double the fan base that’s guaranteed to purchase it. It can be a great way for fans to discover new music. However, sometimes it shows through that the two bands sharing a release are merely two bands not ready to stand on their own. Human Failures, a split between Spiritu and Village of Dead Roads, leans more towards this direction.Spiritu, making their sophomore appearance, hail from the deserts of New Mexico with some warm and upbeat stoner rock. Vocalist Jadd walks the line between mainstream hard rock and grunge, delivering soaring melodies with just a little bit of bite. He shows a fondness for double-tracking vocals, allowing him to harmonize with himself. The other remaining founding member, guitarist Chav, rocks a fuzzed out guitar with compositions reminiscent of Kyuss. Three of their songs remain within a fairly typical rock format, the exception being “Latitude” which extends for a decent 8-and-a-half minutes. The catchy pull-off riffing of their final track “Throwback” is definitely the highlight of their portion.
Village of Dead Roads, from the backwoods of Pennsylvania, takes a more doom-orientated approach. Lots of riding on open drop-tuned strings paired with slow-paced interludes creates sounds along the lines of Tool, Melvins, and Neurosis, without ever actually reaching the aptitude of the aforementioned. Vocalist Doug Corey alternates between dry-lung metal-core screams and emotionally charged clean melodies, neither of which fully compliments the music.
While certainly not a bad release by any means, Human Failures serves as more of a demo of two bands that could either become stars of the underground or claw their way into the mainstream in the hands of the right producer.