Everyone must have at least one of those bands that they’re a casual fan of, who they don’t follow whole-heartedly, but they jump at the opportunity to attend a gig or binge listen to an album every so often. Lower Than Atlantis is that band for me. Many gigs of my early teens were spent sweating to death in the Students’ Union, and perhaps the most memorable of those gigs featured these lovely lads from Watford. And so, for the unadulterated nostalgia of it all, this album was a great one to review.
‘Safe In Sound’ is set to be released on the 3rd February 2017 through Easy Life records, and the band’s singer, Mike Duce, has noted that the album “feels like a much truer representation of our band than the last record.” Additionally, the huge success of their previous self-titled album in 2014 meant writing a follow up was a real challenge for the band.
Duce has described the album’s opening track and second single ‘Had Enough’ as “one of the best Lower than Atlantis songs ever,” and I’d have to agree. It opens the album with a fresh sound that is exacerbated even further within the second track, ‘Dumb.’ This track sways along with an air of musical attitude to it, with the palm muted guitars somehow feeling funky when matched up with the soaring vocal.
‘Boomerang’ mixes a lot of new elements together for Lower Than Atlantis. It feels like the beginning of a new era for the band, especially when compared with the previous 3 songs which feel like classic LTA songs. It feels somewhat like a mashup between the musical style of Ed Sheeran, with something a bit grittier and features typical Lower Than Atlantis lyrics such as “I’ve hit rock bottom and lower, I ain’t got nothing to lose.” It begins with a mantra that is repeated throughout the song, “the tree remembers what the axe forgets.” Undeniably catchy, it’s a cool experimental sounding track that takes you a bit off guard, but it’s a grower. For me anyway, I started to get into it around the third listen.
Speaking of catchy, the next track, ‘Work For It’ showcases the catchy and energetic sound Lower Than Atlantis seem to have become renowned for. It was released as the first single from the album back in August 2016, and for a good reason – it feels like a song you could easily hear repeated on the radio.
A song that snuck up on me was ‘Could Be Worse’, which is my personal favourite on the album. It has a beautiful guitar riff running throughout it that is showcased at the beginning. A song you could still dance too, but it has an emotive feel to it as well, a style that works well for the band.
The album’s closer, ‘A Night to Forget’ combines the styles of the album perfectly into one bite sized, 3-minute-long track. It’s a song you could envisage as the final song of a gig, with the crowd singing along in full thrall, hoping for sure that it won’t be a night they’ll forget.
All in all, this album is pretty damn good. It has everything you would expect from a band currently at the forefront of UK rock music. It’s catchy, full-bodied, and shows real growth. Without a doubt ‘Safe In Sound’ is an album that is one step up from its predecessor, which is exactly what you’re looking for.
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