On November 20th, legendary post-punk band Soft Kill released “Dead Kids, R.I.P. City” to the masses via Cercle Social Records/Cobraside. This includes the singles “Floodgate” featuring Tamaryn, “Pretty Face” and “Roses All Around”. The album takes on the tale of Portland, Oregon the past 20 years with a story of melancholy on how the simple times are seemingly lost to the tech-fueled transformation of the city. The album was produced by Howie Weinberg, who has produced The Cure, Smashing Pumpkins, and Nirvana. Here is our take on the album:
If you have a love of seeking new music you know if an album is worth your time in the first 30 seconds, often in the first few notes. Soft Kill comes crashing through a fog of strings on their opening track, “Roses All Around” and immediately in the summer I would spend time listening to Jesus And Mary Chain and being reckless and in love. As you sink into Dead Kids, R.I.P. City you ride the peaks and valleys of a life well-lived, from the soaring melodies on “Matty Rue” to the steady chugging bassline on “Floodgate”. By the time I was singing “Relax your pretty face, boy, the pain has left you now’ along with Tobias Graves on “Pretty Face” I had vowed not to genre this band for fear someone might not listen to it. A lot of love went into producing Dead Kids, R.I.P City, from production work by David Trumfio (Built To Spill, Jesus and Mary Chain, Wilco) and Mastered by Howie Weinberg (The Cure, Smashing Pumpkins, Nirvana), Soft Kill finds a home amongst those giants with grace and ease, their discography is a worthy dive, full of killer demos and a decade of LPs of and EPs deservingly sold-out. Next, I want to dive into their recent livestream concert.
To celebrate the album’s release Soft Kill hosted a livestream from their hometown of Portland, OR. from Rolling Live Studios, which I attended safely from my home in rural NC. Admittedly this was the first live stream I paid for, which came with the chance to watch it through Dec. 6th, and it was worth every penny. As a new fan of the band it was nice to see the tracks off Dead Kids, R.I.P. City played live and in rip-roaring HD. Soft Kill puts on a great show and their sound has an emotional edge that makes their live show necessary viewing for a fan. I regret not splurging on a download of the superbly mixed audio feed but I added Soft Kill to the top of my list of bands I want to see when we can. Without hyperbole Dead Kids, R.I.P City is going to find itself on a lot of AOTY lists and Soft Kill is going to have an exciting 2021.
Fans can still check out their livestream through December 6th. Tickets range from $10 for general admission, $25 for ticket plus download of show audio and $35 for ticket plus screen printed show poster. Fans can pick up tickets here.
And there you have it! Check out their music video for “Floodgate” below: