No need to worry about bland, generic tunes here. If the Darth Vader-esque monologue at the beginning of Raw Milk doen’t grab your attention, hopefully the funky riffs do. If not, check your pulse.
With its colorful album cover displaying exactly what the title says, The Gang of Thieves’ Dinosaur Sandwich Party appears to be the kind of party to end all other social gatherings. The Burlington, VT band came together in early 2009, and currently the band boasts a 50 percent chance of dreadlocks.
Dinosaur Sandwich Party is their second full-length album and was released in August, 2011. The album expertly pens the jam session vibe, full of sweet bass and a mood that sways between upbeat and laid-back. The Gang’s funky rock and roll sound is both bouncy and smooth, but they can also pull off that dirty, old-school rock style, most notably in Necromantic Judo, whatever that song title means. Dharma Dojo hints at Red Hot Chili Peppers, whose vibe pokes its head throughout other points in the album, along with Rage Against The Machine, whose magnetizing riffs obviously reflect back to Gang of Thieves’s style.
The gold star for this album goes to guitarist Nick Wood, whose riffs and solo work glide seamlessly on their own and carry the songs forward on a wave. Wood’s guitar work also weaves well with Michael Reit’s vocals.
Okay, so the lyrics might encroach a bit on cheesiness at times, but the songs never stop being fun. Reit’s fiddle-playing featured in The Bunny Song makes for a pleasantly surprising addition to the track as they close out the album.
The Gang of Thieves, if it was apparent enough in the title track, just want to kick it, and it’s likely they put on the type of live show at which even the most adamantly stand-still-with-arms-crossed folks in the crowd won’t be able to resist some sort of rhythmic movement.--Sarah Ruggiero