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Dinosaur Pile-Up - 'Celebrity Mansions' Album Review

Leeds' best kept secret

By Neil GregoryPublished 5 years ago 2 min read
Ballin' Like the Rock

At a certain point you get old, and suddenly, you are not up to date on new music, so it's rare when a new band (new to me at least) releases an album that makes an impact on me.

Hailing from Leeds, England, Dinosaur Pile-Up is that band, formed in 2007 from the ashes of singer Matt Bigland's previous band, Mother Vulpine. Their influences are clear to hear, and from Nirvana, Foo Fighters & Weezer, they've taken that 90s grunge and early 00s alt rock and given it a modern polish.

Celebrity Mansions is their fourth full album, and as the kids say, "It's a banger." Too often these days, newer bands are only capable of producing three or four great songs on an album. Where are the classic albums where you have a new favourite song every time you listen to it?

Other sniffier critics have complained about the blatant use of "Americanisms" with the sound and lyrics on this album. Honestly who gives a fuck? I've looked at other reviews that have gone into such pseudo-bollocks-depth about the lyrics that apparently you need a degree in psychology to write a song. Bollocks I say!

This is a great album that sounds big and channels the very best of grunge/alt rock eras. Who cares if they sound American? The first two singles from the album, "Thrash Metal Cassette" and "Back Foot," are fucking amazing songs that have been on constant repeat in my car since they were released.

And what an album opener. "Thrash Metal Cassette" literally starts with an 80s metal riff before kicking into a soaring chorus that recalls the peak era of Foo Fighters and Jimmy Eat World. "Back Foot,"' the second single and first video, gets bonus points for visually referencing one of the all-time greatest music videos, The Beastie Boys' "Sabotage," and the opening riff is like the bastard love child of Pantera & Limp Bizkit. It is easily one of my favourite songs of the year so far.

Next is "Stupid Heavy Metal Broken Hearted Loser Punk," wining the award for longest song title on the album. Opening echoes of the early Foo Fighters, in particular "Wattershed," before crashing into a typical 00s pop punk chorus, though wait for the grungy Nirvana-esque middle eight.

The title track "Celebrity Mansions" is full on "Beverly Hills" era Weezer, while third single "Round The Bend" sounds more like early Feeder than the more American-sounding rest of the album.

"Pouring Gasoline" is another highlight, mixing that Nirvana/Foo Fighters vibe with some impressive Grohl style screaming, which is very reminiscent of "Monkey Wrench" before the middle eight build up channels "All My Life," but all in the best possible way.

The more introspective "Black Limousine" comes right from The Pixies "Where Is My Mind?" While the chorus is full on latter-day Pixies, Foo Fighter fans will once again recognise the build up from "Hey Johnny Park" later in the song.

"K-West" puts us back in Weezer territory, while "Professional Freak" channels the very best of the Stone Temple Pilots jamming with Nirvana. Album closer "Long Way Down" is more a mid-paced way to finish off the album.

Overall, this is one of the best "new" bands I've heard this year (credit has to go to a friend who swears he told me about them years ago and I ignored him, which was probably true). If you are fan of early Foo Fighters, Nirvana, Weezer and grungy alt rock from 90s, then you'll love this album.

album reviews

About the Creator

Neil Gregory

Film and TV obsessive / World Traveller / Gamer / Camerman & Editor / Guitarist

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