Deathbed Confessions comes out swinging on their debut album with 11 hard-hitting original songs. The Tacoma band consists of four veterans of the local heavy-metal scene: Tracy Beardsley on guitar, Jerod Wallace on drums, Joshua Dombek on bass and Damien Killgod on vocals.
“Beer And A Bong” starts things off with a good example of the band’s songwriting. It is a fairly busy composition. Beardsley displays good command of technique and effects pedals. He has developed a distinctive style and this album displays it well.
The second song, “Grande Illusion,” has lyrics that fit the title. “Because this is what you created/ things are not the way they should be/ /because what turns into broken dreams/ just take it one day at a time.”
“Note To Self” opens with a razor-sharp riff. There are several tempo changes.
Wallace’s drumming really propels “Find You In Hell” along. This band is tight and the guitar playing really shines on this track. Killgod delivers a warning to someone who has crossed him. “There is no escape I will find you/ while you were alive I swore that I would take your life/ now that you died I swear that I will find you in hell.”
“Anesthesia” has several tempo changes and intricate riffs.
“Thicker Than Water” is tale of love gone cold. “What will it take you to forgive me/ I have been away a long time now/ it’s not that I didn’t want to girl/ I think about you all the time.”
“Truth Be Told” begins quite fast and heavy. At the 1:15 mark the pace changes. The bass rumbles, the guitar hits high notes, then after 20 seconds it reverts to the previous motif.
“Make Lemonade” begins with guitar notes in a minor key sounding very eerie. Killgod conducts part of a conversation, with someone who apparently is in much anguish. “Show me your true secrets, your mysteries/ I will show you everything that is dead inside of me/ tell me your fears, I’ll show you mine/ I’ll be your inner force of animosity/ I’ll be your backup request for all the pain you’ve caused/ I know your soul, I’ve heard it scream.”
The beginning of “Broken Glass Sundae” is rather slow and heavy, reminiscent of Black Sabbath.
The final minute of the last track, “Blood Loss,” has passages of feedback interspersed with short barrages of all the instruments and vocals.
The album was recorded at the Autopsy Room in Tacoma by the band and Jesse O’Donnell, a recording engineer who has worked with several local metal bands. He knows this genre well and has Deathbed Confessions sounding good.
Killgod is a skilled artist and demonstrates this talent by the album artwork he created. It depicts a ragged, emaciated bird with the title on a paper scroll attached to one leg.
Deathbed Confessions plays Hell’s Kitchen at 5 p.m. on June 23 and O’Malley’s at 8 p.m. on July 15.
Reviewed by John Larson