Album Review: Nothing But Thieves welcome you to Dead Club City

Nothing But Thieves

UK rock band Nothing But Thieves are marking their 10-year anniversary by entering a new era. Dead Club City is their fourth LP, an 11-track concept album that was born during the end of the pandemic.

‘Dead Club City’ is a members-only club. It’s a mindset and a universe that explores concepts around personal relationships/experiences, the world today, media and the music industry. Each track is a new story filled with new characters,  set in a different location in Dead Club City. These stories are told by the fictional band Zzzeros. With a motto of ‘Live Your Perfect Life’ and a now-iconic logo that appears on socials and music videos, we have a sense that this club is about living life to the fullest.

Building a city, writing stories and breaking the traditional rock band stereotype – Nothing But Thieves are proving that they can write, produce and perform across many genres with great success.

The concept for Dead Club City is fully developed to create this musical cinematic universe, with the band keeping it consciously vague and open, allowing listeners to take on their own understanding of this new world.

Dead Club City was recorded and produced by guitarist Dom Craik alongside John Gilmore (production engineering) and Mike Crossey (Mastering) over six months at Kyoto Studios in Essex during 2022.

They rebuilt the studio and named it Dead Club City studios, the birthplace of Zzzeros. This allowed the band to open up their imagination in new ways, without time pressure and distractions. Their creativity was unleashed.

The album opens with the disco fever track “Welcome To The DCC”. The album also contains  the recently-released singles “Overcome” and “Keeping You Around”. The latter contains a lyric easter egg “I am still a broken machine, babe”, a reference to their 2017 album Broken Machine.

Moving through the album, you get a sense that each track is a new sound for Nothing But Thieves. No two songs sound the same or take you on the same journey. You feel something different each time. “Overall Dead Club City” is a rock n roll swing dance that has a soundtrack of disco mixed in with pop, soul and hip-hop. It’s groovy and heartfelt and sends you different signals and meanings with each listen. You could say it’s like a ‘choose your own adventure’ book. No matter where you start or the play order, it’s fresh, unique and playful.

Another highlight is “City Haunts”, showcasing Conor Mason‘s falsetto vocals with a soulful riff and heart tumbling drums. It’s a funky jam that shines through the darkness of the city.

“Green Eyes :: Siena” is a ballad which echoes love. A heartfelt delight that touches the soul. The vocals feel like they are echoing in the mix and the gentle guitar and bass is forward. Imagine it playing in the background of this so-called club and people are swinging.

Dead Club City ends with the heaviest track “Pop The Balloon”. The rock track is epic and glamorous with a catchy melody. The chorus builds with big bass and drums laying on top of each other. Like every story there is a twist, where the breakdown brings the speed of the track down low. The doors to the club are closed on a climax.

Nothing But Thieves’ new era is visual, vibrant, playful and meaningful. Creating a music universe that makes you feel like you’re there walking side by side the band listening to their stories. “Dead Club City” is now open and is welcoming new members daily.


Dead Club City from Nothing But Thieves is out now.

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