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Drugplan - 1999 Drugplan

ARTIST: Drugplan
ALBUM: Drugplan
LABEL: 41 Records
YEAR: 1999
SPONSOR: Drugplan


LINEUP: Andy Curran - vocals, bass * Simon Brierley - guitars * Virginia 'V-Girl' Storey - guitars, keyboards, bazouki * Randy Cooke - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 I Can't Quit You * 02 I'm Dead * 03 Breakdown * 04 The Last Band On Earth * 05 Truck Driver * 06 Nine One One * 07 Apple * 08 I'm So Over You * 09 Taco Bel Air * 10 Pig * 11 Let's Just Stay In Bed * 12 Born Loser

A virtual who's who of the Canadian melodic rock scene is represented here with Drugplan. Made up of ex Lee Aaron personnel Simon Brierley and Randy Cooke, Coney Hatch singer/bassist Andy Curran, as well as Virginia Storey who was a significant solo artist in her own right, Drugplan are playing a style that probably isn't representative of their history and background leading up to this album release. However, it is a record with a late nineties retro/alternative theme, some razor sharp playing, and some bizarre lyrics to boot. Unfortunately, what you won't get here is fluffy melodic rock or any recognisable form of AOR. This team have definitely moved on and kicked some serious ass out of the way to demonstrate their point. The closest comparison I can give you would be Adrian Smith's Psycho Motel project from 1995- 96, especially on the heavier tunes, as well as Faith No More. The music is fairly angst ridden, it doesn't have a lush production job a la Gross, Glixman, Olsen et al, and alternates between meandering passages before crunching grunge oriented guitars kick in with the distortion pedals on overdrive. I'm not sure whether I'm comfortable with Drugplan's particular style given their pedigree, and can only assume they are trying to cut it for the demands of todays modern rock audience. Either that or they have completely gravitated away from their melodic roots. Admittedly it does take a bit of listening, and once you work through to the underbelly you can appreciate the album for what it's worth.

The Songs
The album opener 'I Can't Quit You' is frantic guitar riffarama with equally frantic drumwork. 'I'm Dead' features some grunge type guitarwork. The title is not as bad as it sounds, the lyrics inferring the person in question would be in big trouble if they got found out (if you know what I mean). 'Breakdown' does have some faint melodic moments, while 'The Last Band On Earth' is frantic to the point of being rabid. 'Truck Driver' is a slower paced and mellower song, though the lyrics are lost on me somewhat. The rest of the material continues in the same vein and in most cases moves in a similar direction.

In Summary
Personally for me though, there are too few moments of interest to recommend this disc to followers of melodic rock. On the other hand, if one was a fan of harder alternative rock played in that all too familiar discordant style, then you will find a home here with Drugplan.

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