Sunday, 23 June 2013

Album Review: Letlive. – The Blackest Beautiful

When L.A rockers, Letlive, announced themselves with their third album, 2010’s stunning ‘Fake History’, the post-hardcore scene was treated to a controlled frenzy of fierce, chaotic and gritty music, along with truly explosive live shows.
Thankfully, the immense sound that makes up Letlive’s core – the pulse-pounding energy, the in-your-face ferocity and striking choruses - is still all there, left untampered with on their fourth album release, ‘The Blackest Beautiful’. But from the very first lyrics of lead single Banshee (Ghost Fame),We’re here to fulfil every one of your dreams’, it’s clear that the band mean business.  This, along with the politically charged America’s Beautiful Black Market reveals the band’s ever-growing maturity when it comes to song writing, as does the groove-orientated The Dope Beat, which focuses on staying true to your roots, ‘…Burnt down my house, now I’ve got nowhere to call home’.
Punchier songs, Empty Elvis and The Fear Fever are album highlights, showcasing the band’s ability to mix aggression with delicate melody. The latter is an adrenaline-filled party anthem, reminiscent of ‘Fake History’s, Renegade 86’, while the former packs a punch with its piercing chorus wrapped in brutal vocals, delivered brilliantly by frontman Jason Butler, who’s personality and swagger shine through more than ever.
Indeed, the album is littered with these shining moments from Butler, making it truly his finest performance. When the haunting Virgin Dirt – a laid back, yet intense affair – kicks in, creating a great contrast to the two previous tracks, we’re treated to another of his flashes of brilliance and passion; the rawness of the song only emphasised by its ending, when Butler, after tearing out some his most personal lyrics, takes a moment to compose himself, then mutters the words ‘I’m okay’, before violins see the song out, adding to the its beauty.
Dreamer’s Disease is an incredibly lively song, containing one of the album’s most memorable choruses, while Pheromone Cvlt focuses on the melodic talents within the band, providing a tantalising and thought-provoking song.  
27 Club is another anthem; it’s incredible hook leading way to an enigmatic outro to finish the album off perfectly.
As always, Letlive provide a refreshing and welcome change from a lot of today’s bands; their music full of an attitude rarely seen these days, which this album had in abundance. It’s a deep and at times emotional set of songs that make ‘The Blackest Beautiful’, unquestionably, an ‘album of the year’ candidate.


- Amy Parker

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