D.R.U.G.S – Destroy Rebuild (Album Review)

D.R.U.G.S. Destroy Rebuild tracklisting

Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows – Destroy Rebuild
Released: June 17th, 2022 

Line-up

Craig Owens // Vocals
Jona Weinhofen // Guitar
Aaron Patrick // Bass
Aaron Stechauner // Drums

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Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows (D.R.U.G.S. for short) are back after 11 years with their sophomore album Destroy Rebuild. Well, lead vocalist Craig Owens is, with a slew of new bandmates including the likes of Jona Weinhofen on guitars (former Bring Me The Horizon and I Killed the Prom Queen), Aaron Patrick on bass (former All That Remains), and drummer Aaron Stechauner. The twelve-track album has been no secret, with a single released basically monthly since February 2022. However, I personally haven’t listened to DRUGS before, so I was keen to go into this new reiteration with an open mind.

The album opens with ‘Destiny’, and aggressive, fast chugs on guitars and battle-like drums greet the listener, followed by a short verse that builds into an anthemic first chorus, all within the first 40-seconds. Later in the track, Craig Owens unleashes some screams reminiscent of early 2000’s screamo/post-hardcore, before the track closes with the classic double chorus.

Satellites In Motion’ follows, keeping the pace going. The upbeat chorus is a highlight for me, with Owens hitting those high-notes singing “like saaatttteelliiiiites” – something I imagine many fans singing along to, both at live shows and in their rooms/cars. The song also features a nice riffdown that will have venues bouncing. Up next is ‘GOLD’, a slower and cleaner track, but still featuring a huge sing-along chorus, with a kind of haunting keyboard melody in the background. The bridge had me thinking the song was going to finish hard but let me down a little, just going back into a final chorus – though this may just be the metalcore kid in me.

Brighter Side’ starts soft, but quickly heats up, with another massive chorus. Craig gets up into his high vocal range again with Jona Weinhofen providing a chunky guitar riff. After the second chorus, the song breaks briefly, with only Aaron Stechauner’s drumbeat keeping it going until the chorus kicks back in. When a track opens with slow melodic “woahs” you know you’re in for a song written to have the whole venue singing, hands in the air, waving side to side… ‘Outcasts VS Everyone’ is this track. A driving bass line provided by Aaron Patrick keeps the verses going, which also feature rapper Brennan Savage. Guitars kick in for the chorus’ and easy, repeated phrasing vocal lines with long end notes, and “woahs” provide effortless sing-along material.

Supercalifragilisticexistentialcrisis’ begins with some quick vocal lines from Craig Owens before dropping into a slow anthemic chorus with Craig reaching those high notes again. The track bounces between the upbeat verses and the slowed down chorus with drawn-out vocals, giving me the feeling the song doesn’t know what it wants to be.

The Longest Road’ drops the pace completely into a slow, vocal-focused bop. Minor instrumentals are in the background, except for the chorus that hits about halfway through the track when the full band kicks in. Craig really shows his range during the chorus with impressive layered vocals. There is also a nice violin featured throughout the track. The album picks up again with ‘(Are we not drawn onward to) NEW ERA’; tremolo guitar riffs and a driving drumbeat straight out of the gate will have listeners bobbing their heads. The track maintains pace throughout, with a cool little heavy riffdown before the closing chorus.

DRUGS slow it down again for ‘What’s the Code for Heaven’s Gate?’. I can’t quite pick it, but the chorus sounds very familiar, reminiscent of something from a movie soundtrack. A highlight of the track for me, is the symphonic bridge, driven by chugging guitars and hype-up drums. Gravity (My Ever Ghost)’ is a heavier track, with a relatively nasty riff greeting listeners. Fast-paced verses lead into another big chorus (do you feel a theme here?). The song also features a chunky breakdown that made this listener happy. Continuing with the heavier theme is ‘Waiting On You’. Fast verses, build-up pre-chorus, anthemic chorus and a solid riffdown are all here.

Album closer ‘The Arm’ maintains the faster, heavier vibe. A chunky riff opens the track and continues through the first verse, until the big chorus hits. Rinse and repeat before breaking into a melodic, slow bridge, that ends up building into an epic album closing with Craig Owens’ vocals soaring over big guitar chords, drums and symphony.

Overall, not a bad offering after a decade-long break. The album is packed with anthemic choruses, in both the softer, slower songs and heavier, faster tracks, but struggles to find pace as it bounces back and forth between them. Craig Owens delivers vocally, Jona Weinhofen and Aaron Patrick provide solid riffage, and Aaron Stechauner’s drumming complements the songs well, with driving beats and lots of sick fills. I imagine returning fans will enjoy Destroy Rebuild, but it is not quite my cup of tea.

D.R.U.G.S. Destroy Rebuild tracklisting

Destroy Rebuild Until God ShowsDestroy Rebuild tracklisting:

  1. DESTINY
  2. Satellites In Motion
  3. GOLD
  4. Brighter Side
  5. Outcast VS Everyone (feat. Brennan Savage)
  6. Supercalifragilisticexistentialcrisis
  7. The Longest Road
  8. (Are we not drawn onward) NEW ERA
  9. What’s the Code for Heaven’s Gate?
  10. Gravity (My Ever Ghost)
  11. Waiting On You
  12. The Arm

Rating: 6/10
Destroy Rebuild is out now via Velocity Records. Grab it here
Review by Anthony Santoro

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