Doctor Smoke combine metal and rock influences into 43 minutes of infectious material. The songs boast a relatively good range of stylistic influences, while still retaining a holistic feel and good flow to the album; the tracks all share largely the same template, but one that’s made up a few different details and nuances.
You can hear the band’s different influences manifesting in different parts of the music, but the honest love of metal and rock brings it all together under Doctor Smoke’s colourful umbrella. Both classic and modern styles can be heard across the album, from a selection of metal, rock, and doom subgenres. Ghost are the obvious band reference point, along with other acts like Haunt and Lucifer’s Hammer, although I should point out that Doctor Smoke are their own beast and their music has its own well-developed personality.
The band’s song-focused approach pays dividends, and each track is a gem of a song. With plenty of catchy hooks and a singer whose voice fits the music like a studded leather glove, the album carries very little filler. Each of the songs is well-crafted and hits the spot well, assaulting the listener with so many hard rocking riffs and moreish vocal refrains that it’s hard to sit still and not get up and dance.
The above is ably distilled into a collection of songs that sound more old-school than they don’t. The end result is a journey into the appealing and textured world of Dreamers and the Dead that provides quite the compelling and enjoyable experience.
If you’re looking for some hard rock anthems with a metal edge, then look no further than this. Dreamers and the Dead is shocking good fun, and is an essential listen for anyone into this kind of thing.