Album Review: Dead Ahead – Dead Ahead EP

Bringing together a collection of punk backgrounds – procuring members from the likes of Autopilot Off and With The Punches – Dead Ahead’s debut EP presents an emphatic and unwavering slab of punk rock.

What the New York outfit display is not the sound of a disaffected youth, nor the introspective struggles of a digital-age punk band. Instead, in just four short tracks, Dead Ahead deliver a passionate re-emergence onto the scene; a quartet of musicians relishing the opportunity to make music for their own gratification and thriving in each other’s company whilst doing so.

At times ‘Dead Ahead’ does appear somewhat one-dimensional, partly due to the parameters the band themselves have set out. Whilst at barely ten minutes in length this is something they can scarcely afford to do, these moments are few and far between, outweighed instead by the collusion of sustained percussive assault and incisive guitar work setting the ideal back drop for Jesse Vadala’s enthused vocal delivery.

A record that will appeal largely to the punk rock purists, it is then perhaps slightly ironic that the EP peaks when the band pull their most hook-heavy bow from the quiver, closing gem ‘Exit Letters’, providing a masterful balance of punch and melody – an apt climax with Vadala exclaiming: “I’ll take this and write it down, while I’m ripe with those memories…”

Progressive and thought-provoking, ‘Dead Ahead’ is not, but the self-titled offering is proof that the simplest ideas are often the best.


‘Dead Ahead’ by Dead Ahead is out now on Panic State Records.

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Words by James Lloyd (@ct4james)

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