This duo made one hell of an impression on me with “No Name No Color” a couple of years ago. It’s true, Middle Class Rut wear their influences on their sleeves… it’s all Jane’s Addiction (the vocals), Filter (the atmosphere) and Rage Against The Machine (the guitars) with them. There’s no denying that. But there’s something about how they mix elements from all those bands in such a way that you simply can’t resist.
“Pick Up Your Head” - simply put - is more. It’s more of everything I loved about “No Name No Color”. It’s more melodic. There’s more variety. The songs sound bigger and the drums are even more hypnotic than before. Opener “Born Too Late” is like listening to a duel between the guitars and the drums and it’s a call for attention that will not be dismissed. Just for your information, the drums win if you ask me. They dial it down a bit after that with “Leech” and “Weather Vein” before going all anthemic on our asses with “No More”. “Dead Eye” starts off mostly acoustic before building up to a very agreeable climax and first single “Aunt Betty”… well, it’s pretty friggin’ good as well.
In short: no sophomoric slump in sight for MC Rut… “Pick Up Your Head” is even better than its predecessor.