Very well written songs
Great variety in feel and dynamics
Tasteful use of lead guitar
Drum mix a little shallow and lifeless
By Tom Breedon
Rusty Pacemaker is a one man project from Lanzenkirchen, Austria, and yet another fine example of the depth in underground European musical talent. It’s truly extraordinary what individuals are capable of in this day and age. Gone are the days of an absolute need to get a full band together and visit a purpose built recording studio. Home studios are the order of the day, and the modern musician is a versatile beast, able to play multiple instruments to a high level as well as possessing the necessary skills to record, mix and master to studio quality. Rusty Hessel, the architect of Rusty Pacemaker, fits the description across the board with his latest release Ruins.
Ruins is a very well written album which digresses through a variety of dynamics and feels whilst at all times maintaining a haunting, eerie vibe which is ever present within Rusty’s clear and well articulated vocals. Each song is a glowing testament to expert musicianship where tasteful use of lead guitar parts compliment the simple but effective approach. Instead of over complexity, which in other similar projects can often compromise a potentially good song, Rusty utilizes clever layers, dynamics, and the introduction of subtle piano parts to really emphasize the chilling sense of impending dread. Songs such as “Matter Over Mind” really display the full range of skills behind Rusty’s music, combining the slow and subtle acoustic, piano and synth sections with sudden tempo changes, a catchy chorus chant, and some exceptionally well played underlying lead guitar.
Rusty Pacemaker has a remarkable way of showing versatility whilst at all times maintaining a familiar feel throughout this album. The diversity between the heavy rock and up tempo tracks such as “Made of Lies” next to the folk inspired lengthy intros of songs like “Knowing” is massive, yet the melancholic and bold vocals maintain that feeling you get when someone is about to get murdered in a horror movie, but you don’t know exactly when!
A great work by a very talented and expressive musician who is not afraid to be different within the context of heavy rock. I’d very much recommend you check out Rusty Pacemaker’s album Ruins, which is available now from their website.
Tom’s pick of the album: Matter Over Mind