Sin Dealer
Dying To Live

Coming from the same mold as bands like Brand New Sin — a blend of old school hard rock, metal, southern influences and gruff vocals — Sin Dealer’s sophomore album Dying to Live is certainly interesting. There are some good grooves, memorable melodies and a nice cover of AC/DC’s “Walk All Over You.” But there’s one big distraction — vocalist Eric Kuthe’s Rob Zombie imitation.

I’m not saying that it’s intentional. Perhaps it’s Kuthe’s natural vocal delivery. But it is very distracting. Zombie’s vocals are so distinct that when you get another guy that sounds like him, even when the music itself doesn’t sound anything like White Zombie (as is often the case on this record), you still can’t help but make the comparison. To give the guys in Sin Dealer credit though, this record is certainly better than anything Zombie’s produced in a while.

The first few songs on the record really have the White Zombie vibe. While there are moments, like the bluesy groove of “Lying to Myself” and the swinging opening riff of “Betrayal,” it’s not until the title track, a ballad, that the band separates itself from the Zombie sound. Kuthe backs off a little on the growl and delivers a subdued, but strong performance on the song. “Magic Woman” follows, bringing in a real hell-raising redneck rawk feel. It’s the first time on the record that I feel like I’m really hearing who Sin Dealer is, and I really like it.

There’s a brief trip back to White Zombie land on “Going Down,” and even though it sounds like it came straight from La Sexorcisto (think “Psychoholic Slag” or “I Am Legend”) it’s hard to not like the slow, cool groove. Likewise, the trippy “Devil’s War” that closes the record, with its classic, southern and blues rock influences provides a tasty finishing touch to the record.

The AC/DC cover provides perhaps the strongest moment on the record, and the fact that it outshines most of the other tracks shows that Sin Dealer still has a lot of room for improvement in the songwriting department. That said, the band’s original tunes do show a lot of promise if they’d turn up the rowdy, hell-raising sound and we could get a little more Kuthe and a little less Zombie in the vocals.

In the end, Dying to Live sounds a little bit like what White Zombie might sound like if they’d formed in Alabama. That’s made even stranger by the fact that Sin Dealer hails from Canada. I don’t think this record truly delivers what the band is capable of, but it’s a promising effort and I’ll be interested to see where they go from here.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Fred Phillips
March 17th, 2008


  1. Commented by: Edward

    Amazing album used to have it,don’t know what happend to it but i loved every song on it.

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