Hailing from Macclesfield, England, the Virginmarys are here to remind us what rock 'n' roll is all about with their debut album, King Of Conflict, which officially drops today.
Executing a perfect blend of gritty guitar riffs, blues-tinged melodies and wailing vocals, the trio have managed to produce an album that's reminiscent of the classics yet firmly rooted in the present. Tracks like "Just A Ride" blaze with escalating instrumentals and a jagged, hooky heavy chorus, while "My Little Girl" shrieks and shivers. "Bang Bang Bang" fuses psychedelic guitars with guttural vocals while "Running For My Life" blends twang and grit, dizzying riffs and explosive percussion.
It's an effort that begs to be played with the volume turned up and one that we think you'll find yourself returning to, so stream all 12 tracks below and go behind the music with an exclusive track-by-track commentary from vocalist/guitarist Ally Dickaty
. You can also buy the full album via iTunes
"Dead Man's Shoes"This is a song about an addictive personality and knowing that what you want and crave so much is damaging you, but doing it anyway to the bitter end. It’s one of my favourite songs to play live ‘cause of its energy, and frantically heavy riff. It always gets the crowd going, and it's great to see them go mad to it. "Portrait Of Red"This is a song primarily about sex and wanting your partner to take their frustrations out on you for your own benefit: ‘Scratch out your life, paint me a portrait of red, beat out the truth when I am lying in bed.’ It’s definitely a fan favourite with an aggressive sing-along chorus and filled with instrumental breaks. Just A RideThis is a bitter love song about a relationship cut short by suspicion and stubbornness. The result is pride trying to ignore the pain through bitterness, summing up the relationship as just a ride. It’s one my favourite lyrics I’ve written. Like a lot of the songs, I wrote this acoustically. It was a lot slower before we jammed it out in the practice room and it came together really quickly.” Out Of MindThis is a really fun song to play—mainly based around an urgent 12 bar blues. Its lyrics are pretty blatant...about messy nights out. It’s one of the first songs that we did together and I have loads of great memories jammin’ over it. Bang Bang BangThis is a really big song for us! It opened a lot of doors and was named iTunes Single of the Week. It's a massive live song, and one that the crowd shouts along and goes mad for. Lost WeekendOne of the most melodic and catchy, yet lyrically dark songs we've done. Written on acoustic over a weekend of a relationship gone wrong. Really love the simplicity of this song and its pounding bass and drums. Running For My LifeProbably the biggest, heaviest, riff song we've done. Anxious lyrics...questioning all that's going on around [you] and wanting to run away from everything. Dressed To KillI had the line 'she dresses to kill, she's saving my life' and wrote a song around it over the months that followed. It’s about a dream girl with a tortured soul who's taken over your mind. You'd do anything for her because she's become your life. This is one of my favourite Virginmarys songs. It’s really emotional to play—a dark love song but also really uplifting. My Little Girl Based around a 12 bar pattern with a really heavy blues riff. One of my favourite songs to play live and gives everyone free reign to do what they want instrumentally. Lyrically, it's written about a wild girl who fires you up. Takin' The BlameThis was a riff I had written a while back and made into a song a lot later. It has a chug- along Foo Fighters-style verse, but it’s a very riff-heavy song. Lyrically, it's about being a scapegoat and putting yourself in the firing line for someone. You've Got Your Money, I’ve Got My SoulWe put this together in parts...almost the merging of two different songs. It’s almost the Doors meets Queens Of The Stone Age meets the Beatles. Probably one of our more complex songs. Lyrically, it's about being disillusioned with the world, the importance of being true to yourself and not selling your soul for money.” Ends Don't MendI remember writing this in my bathroom on an acoustic, which is hard to believe when you hear the song live. It’s the most epic Virginmarys song to date. Really soulful and powerful. I wrote the lyrics about going back-and-forth in a relationship before realising you can never be together.