If you were to listen to GET DEAD’s upcoming album Dancing with the Curse before reading this, you would think it was written about the year 2020. Surprisingly, the band started recording it more than two years ago but it feels perfectly time for today. Look no further than the song “Pepperspray,” written long before the protests of summer 2020. The band had begun collaborating with activist-artist collective Indecline on a video before the George Floyd protests erupted. If there was any time to share the message of “Pepperspray,” this was it.
While Dancing with the Curse features Get Dead’s signature NorCal punk sound, balancing bombast with up-picked bounce and dirt-smudged acoustic songs, listeners will notice some curious moments. Subtle electronic flourishes lurk in songs like “Disruption,” “Glitch,” “Confrontation,” and “Take It.” The album opens with an atmospheric intro built on singer Sam King’s gravelly voice and hip-hop-inflected cadence—a happy accident. These sonic detours suit a band that isn’t known to stay in one place for too long.
The conclusion of a long yet worthwhile journey, Dancing with the Curse is Get Dead’s most self-assured album yet, one perfectly suited to the times: raw, energized, frustrated, but ultimately unbowed.