There’s nothing worse than a band getting hype for a new album for it then to get poor record sales and poor reviews. But Lower Than Atlantis’ last album Changing Tune (2012) was labeled as “too safe, too bland and too boring”. The last hardcore punk album is a massive contrast to the Watford quartet’s new punk-rock self-titled.
With a change of record labels and a two year gap between the last LP and the new, the upbeat and party feel of the self-titled album has drastically seen the band move away from the 2012 release. Two incredible singles, ‘Here we go’ and ‘English kids in America,’ are joined by seven other exuberant and bubbly tracks including the possible future single and chart topper, ‘Stays the same’.
Lead singer-songwriter Mike Duce sings that he’s going to “waste your time” in the tenth listed song of the album, ‘Time’. I disagree. Each song manages to make you want to turn the music all the way up, jump off your sofa then head bang and rave until your parents or neighbours scream at you to turn it down.
The first song on the track list, and also the first single, ‘Here we go’ has been its own promotion for the band having been played on mainstream radio ever since its release. The second single ‘English kids in America’ is an anthemic tune in which the four men from the East of England sing “This is goodbye” as they leave Watford for a sunnier America. The band recorded their tour of the USA which made the song a perfect fit for such a video. The video highlights that they can get away from life at home where Duce sings that “the open road is all I know”.
Despite the many remarkable choruses and guitar riffs, there are a few songs which are easily forgettable. ‘Criminal’, ‘Live slow Die old’ and ‘Damn Nation’ would all fail to make even the top 100 if released as singles. The slow and not very exciting ‘Damn Nation’ contrasts with the bubbly songs before and after.
Nowadays, it’s not easy for an artist to create an album in which every song could be a massive hit. And with a track like ‘Live slow Die old’, Lower Than Atlantis have certainly not managed to create the best LP made. The boring chorus and repetitive nature makes the disappointing 2012 album come crawling back into memory.
Despite the eighth song making you lose interest, the English quartet manage to save themselves from further disappointment with the final three songs exploding speakers and giving the band a new name for themselves.
The closing track is a fantastic end to a huge album with Mike Duce singing “I’m not giving up ‘til we’re number one”. A bold statement from the front man – although one thing’s for sure, with hard work and some luck, Lower Than Atlantis might just get there.