DuCru - A Language Apart
Baltimore rock band DuCru isn’t messing around with their debut ep “A Language Apart.” In case you need proof just know that they got the Front of House for Mars Volta (Matt Bittman) to engineer and produce the album. If you need further proof one listen of the album will clear things up as the group takes a familiar sound and mixes in new elements traditionally not heard from your typical rock band.
The album takes off like a crotch rocket with an ode to Pinky and the Brain (Narf!). The song is called “Pinky” but it’s clear that this album is more evil genius than goofball dimwit. An immediate influence of the Foo Fighters (we’re talking “Echos, Silence, Patience, & Grace” Foo Fighters) is felt with the opening as the song is fast paced, hard rocking, and will leave you breathless. “Pinky” obviously refers to creating a plan to take over the world and it’s a fitting introduction for a band that seems poised to conquer audiences with one riff after another.
We start to get a glimpse at the breadth of DuCru as “Grounded for Life” kicks in. The song is composed of with layers of alt rock crammed under the surface. Listening to it made me feel as though Modest Mouse and The Black Keys made a love child (who then was pissed at his kids). “Juggernaut” extends the scope of their sound with the use of female vocals (and a killer hook too!). The closing track of the album , “To this Day” displays DuCru’s depth as the song discusses a life wasted by choosing unhappiness. It’s interesting that the album starts referencing a cartoon and ends in this manner but it really speaks to the group’s range in substance as the group is fully capable of writing fun and serious songs.
“POV” is possibly my favorite of the 6 tracks of the album. The vocals transform themselves into a taunting tone during each verse and the instrumentals develop a haunting feeling around the song. The chorus is the real kicker though as the instrumentals pick up with an extremely clear transition and the vocals go full effect. The result is a sound that mirrors the alternative metal sound of Sevendust and Alice in Chains (two bands I typically wouldn’t put together but now that I’ve heard this it makes me want these two groups to collaborate). “The Last Thread” hits on the same elements as “POV” but do so in a slower, darker manner.
On first listen to “A Language Apart” I was reminded of my first listen to The Toadies “Rubberneck” album. Not because they sound similar, but the fact that upon the first listen to “Rubberneck” I thought to myself that this is as pure rock and roll as it gets. Regardless of what genre is your favorite it has to be impossible to be a fan of rock and not like the “Rubberneck” album. With that said, it would be beyond me that a fan of rock music could listen to “A Language Apart” and not enjoy it. DuCru plays on multiple sounds that won’t be unfamiliar to you which makes this an easy first listen. What separates them from other bands however is their ability to take different influences and make a sound that is their own which makes this an enjoyable album on your 10th listen (which is about where I’m at with the album and I’m still loving it).