All Part Of The Mechanical Menagerie

With a cover of N.W.A's "Fuck Tha Police."

Dope are one of the many industrial metal hand-me-downs to attract attention

this year because of their Marilyn Manson-type sound. Equal parts industrial

thud and Rob Zombie-styled drop-tuned guitar rock, Dope aim for the addictive

rhythmic stomp of their influences. But while Dope may be derived from

pure sources, their filtration process creates a very potent mixture

without the excess and filler of the original form.

Instead, Felons and Revolutionaries sounds more energetic and

heady than much of either Marilyn Manson's Mechanical Animals or

Rob Zombie's Hellbilly Deluxe, perhaps because Dope know just what

elements will hook their users enough to score repeatedly.

"Pig Society" (RealAudio

excerpt) opens the album with lunging guitars and explosive snare

rolls clearing a path for vocalist Edsel Dope's effect-drenched growl,

"you don't know what it's like to be in me/ You don't know what I've

survived and you never would believe." Rather than the uber-heft of the

genre's untuned guitars, though, the song sounds urgent because of its

standard tuning, rapid riffs and 2/2 downbeat. The pace quickens as Edsel

launches the chorus diatribe: "sick of politicians and politics and prisons/

Lying and running my life/ You pathetic preachers and hypocritical leaders/

Smiling and wasting my time."

Next, the pace and tuning drop slightly, as "Debonair" (RealAudio

excerpt) revisits the quiet verse/loud chorus dynamic and

electro-pulse beat featured on Manson's Antichrist Superstar. A

slightly less incensed Edsel whispers and seethes about the uselessness

of high fashion and lavish belongings while the band flogs its gear.

Ultimately, what sets Dope apart from the flurry of industrial/metal hybrid

bands is their penchant for infectious melodies, which never interfere

with their churning rhythms and behemoth guitars. Songs like "Everything

Sucks" and "Kimberly's Ghost" (RealAudio

excerpt) compound marching rhythms with electronic beats to counter

drummer Preston Nash's headbanging thwaps. Meanwhile, Edsel's muscular

screams harmonize with thick guitar melodies that drop in like concrete

slabs.