When most people chart the geographical expanse of rock and metal music, the Baltic States are often ignored. It's easy to awe at the innovation of the Nordic people then skip over to see what the Russians are doing. By doing so they omit talent cultivated in Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia which is where the band Pedigree calls home. The band's release Growing Apart comes to America in full cycle because the disc seems to be heavily influenced by rock we've been carefully cultivating here for the last 15 years. The first track “Snake House” has a distinct indie-rock feel with a meandering bassline and screamo vocals. From there it's a journey through elements of American rock filtered through a Baltic lens. The third track “Skincrawler” feels like something born and raised in the southwest as the guitar work has an arid tinge and the vocals are spoken with a mouthful of dirty broken beer bottles. Halfway through the disk it shifts into more sinister territory with the creepily slow crunch of the song “Deathmask”, the melancholy lull of “Moments”, and the almost gothic interlude “Empire Burns Black”. The disc closes with “Final Heartbeat” which breaks at the speed of a glacier crushing a man to death.
Pedigree seems to have channeled a grungy bleakness that infects every track on the release. It's almost as if they listened to the sound of an angst ridden Seattle band and meshed it with the intensity of a SoCal hard rock outfit, interlaced with the dark elements of a southern Florida band and mixed in an Estonian blender on Frappe. The result works more often than not but I'm afraid Pedigree has a hard road ahead of them to gain a significant American audience. Still, if you're a dark youth in Estonia who gets release through hard rock, Pedigree would be a good bet to use as the soundtrack for unleashing your demons.