thedirtyearthThe Dirty Earth is a Sydney band that cites the MC5 as a precursor among others but to be blunt, right now their sound is more Maroubra Seals Club than Grande Ballroom.

The Dirty Earth coalesced around the core of soulful singer Mandy Newtown and an engine room of Greg Refeld and Jim Allison in mid 2011, under the name Bottle Rocket. After a personnel re-shuffle (the I-94 Bar's occasional writer Earl O'Neill was originally onboard) guitarists Raf Iacurto (ex-Thumlock) and Scott Campbell joined.

The five-track EP was recorded by Russell Pilling at Damien Gerards and has that unmastered, demo feel with the guitars needing a little more separation and positioning. An album's in the offing so this was presumably recorded to showcase the band to labels and to be put under the noses of fans. 

It doesn't suck. It's better than average pub rock and presumably the best songs have been saved for the long-player. The Dirty Earth have absorbed a lot of Thin Lizzy, AC/DC and BellRays and applied their riffs to their own canvas. Mandy Newton's powerful vocals are a strong differentiator and many will use the Baby Animals as a reference point.

The Dirty Earth are playing in the same sandpit as Detroit's (presumably defunct) Paybacks - although without Wendy Case's grittiness. And there's the rub - I'd like to hear The Dirty Earth apply more grime and less polish. I'd like to hear the guitars roar like a departing 767 and scrape paint from walls. I'd like to hear the bass rumble like an earthquake and the drummer get under the beat and push it forward like a super-charged earthmover.

I think they can do it.


The Dirty Earth on Bandcamp