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Red Line Chemistry, ‘Tug of War’ – Album Review

Red Line Chemistry - 'Tug of War'

With their third studio album, ‘Tug of War,’ Red Line Chemistry have truly hit their stride. While there was nothing wrong with their previous releases — in fact, fans got some killer songs like ‘Dumb Luck’ and ‘Ultragigantor’ from them — this new disc takes the band to the next level.

Produced by Nick Raskulinecz, who has worked with acts like Alice in Chains, Deftones and Stone Sour, ‘Tug of War’ shows the band in a whole new light. With a fuller and more dynamic sound, Red Line Chemistry prove with this record that they are destined for big things in the rock world.

In the summer of 2012, singer Brett Ditgen told Loudwire about the album, “You’ll definitely hear some different tones. We tried some lower tunings and heavier sounds.” Songs like ‘Unspoken‘ and ‘Paralyzed’ give fans a familiar taste of Red Line Chemistry’s style, but those heavier sounds definitely explode in tunes like the title track ‘Tug of War,’ ‘The Fighter’ and ‘Black Roses.’ It’s also not uncommon to hear a mix of slower, sludgier sounds along with a very progressive feel, reminiscent of Tool.

Along with those dynamic sounds, Ditgen’s melodic vocals carry this album from start to finish, whether he’s accompanied by heavy guitar riffs and pounding drums or highlighted with eerie acoustic sounds, like in the beautiful track ‘Through the Haze.’

Perhaps, what was different from the band’s first albums is the level of maturity achieved on ‘Tug of War.’ After years and years of touring and teaming up with a producer like Raskulinecz, the band sounds like it’s here to stay. Hailing from Kansas City, Red Line Chemistry know what it’s like to start out with nothing and to put their entire lives into their music. In ‘Paralyzed,’ Ditgen sings, “We’ll live to fight another day in the game / Whatever comes our way / We’re not paralyzed.” Whether it was intended to be or not, that could easily be the mantra for the band.

Red Line Chemistry have produced a stellar album with ‘Tug of War.’ From beginning to end, each song earns its place. If ‘Tug of War’ is a sign of what’s to come from Red Line Chemistry, then fans are in for one hell of a ride.

4 Stars

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