Syracuse, New York rockers Brand New Sin have just unloaded their fifth studio album, United State (Goomba Music). The follow up to 2009’s self-released, Distilled. In typical blue-collar tradition the guys did it fighting tooth and nail all the way.
After spending much of 2010 on tour opening for Slash, the guys headed back into the studio.
New to the group is lead guitarist Tommy Matkowski who joins brethren Chuck Kahl (bass), Kevin Dean (drums) and guitarist and now vocalist Kris Wiechmann. Weichmann also produced the album with Ron Keck and Ronnie Dark.
While Weichmann’s vocals are still a bit raw on his first effort up front, the overall feel gives United State a grittier feel. The album is full of dirty, ballsy, blues-laden, edgy rock with some Southern flavor thrown in for good measure. Brand New Sin don’t play that 11-song industry bullshit either. They guys ante up with 16 tracks including covers of Black Sabbath‘s “The Wizard” and AC/DC‘s “What Do You Do For Money Honey”.
While the covers are nice, it’s the originals that make this a fantastic offering from the guys. The band recently shot the video “The Lord Came Down” in the basement of an industrial warehouse in Detroit, Michigan.
Kris and Chuck took some time over the holidays to jot down some track by track commentary on the new new album, just for their fans.
The Lord Came Down – The song is about answering to your self rather than to a god. “The lord”, is your guilty conscience not allowing you peace. – Kris
Know Yourself – We had a singer in between our original singer and me, named Joe Sweet. He wrote the lyrics for this song. I can remember kicking around these riffs in our old band Godbelow. Kenny and I came up with the riffs on Charley’s porch. It seemed like such a waste of a song not to release it. Joe Sweet didn’t want us to use his lyrics (at first) but I couldn’t have written it as well as he did. – Kris
All My Wheels – There’s a funny thing about this song. The label wanted us to edit a phrase and get to the chorus quicker. If you do read the lyrics in the CD booklet you’ll find the 4th line in the verse that was edited: “and though I never ‘made it’ I’m afraid I wouldn’t trade it for something perishable”. Success is in the eye of the beholder. Poor people say shit like this all the time. – Kris
Rotten as Hell – This is a real personal song, it’s about some specific people and it would be funny for me to hear somebody else’s speculations as to its meaning. – Kris
Elbow Grease – There are people out there that tell you that all you need do is work a little harder to become well-off. It’s hard to not think that you’re constantly being scammed. – Kris
Infamous – Last year we toured with our good friends The Born Again Rebels. We were messing around with the guitars at a camp site near Niagara Falls. Tommy came up with a riff. I had these lyrics that I wrote in the van one night while hiding away from whatever social shit was happening. The chorus is like an epitaph. – Kris
Groups of 5 – Tommy wrote the music for this song and we helped him arrange it. I wrote the lyrics with Kevin and Tommy in the van outside Jackson’shouse (former bassist of the Boston band – Truman Highway). It’s about being a loner and being kind of trapped in your own head. In my opinion, these are my favorite lyrics that I’ve written. “It’s a windowless, blackened, edifice. It’s a fortress that stands just as tall as the day is long” says everything. The groups of 5 are like the scribblings on the wall of a prison cell – four lines with a fifth one crossing through it. – Kris
Your Song and Dance – It seems like I have a million songs about singing into a mirror. This song is about me plain and simple. – Kris
Goddess of War – Manipulative woman. – Kris
The Cup and the Lip – It’s about the 9-5. I don’t want to get up and go to work. – Kris
Bed Of Nails – This song is a description of a man who is a long time friend of the band. It was inspired by a dark period in his life. His struggle to keep his head.
Travel Well (The Les Daniels Song) – I think he was the last true music fan that I was close to. It wasn’t until he died that I realized how much history we had together. In my earliest memories of playing in bands I can remember him being there. – Kris
What Do You Do For Money Honey – Cover of a great AC/DC song from a great album, Back in Black. – Kris
Glory Days – It’s not a Bruce Springsteen song. – Kris
Sad Wings – This is just something that happened and we thought people would get a kick out of it. It’s a song off of our first record stripped down to its most basic form. Our old guitar player Slider wrote the lyrics. – Kris