Lower Slaughter - Some Things Take Work - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Lower Slaughter - Some Things Take Work

by Sean Hewson Rating:8 Release Date:2019-03-29
Lower Slaughter - Some Things Take Work
Lower Slaughter - Some Things Take Work

Since Lower Slaughter’s debut – What Big Eyes in 2017 – lead singer Sinead Young has moved back to Glasgow, whilst the rest of the band (Barney Wakefield (bass), Graham Hebson (drums) and Jon Wood (guitar)) have stayed in Brighton. Regardless of this they have written and recorded Some Things Take Work, although the title suggests that it has been a bit of a disruption.

Gas comes in with a huge Sabbath riff and Young’s unmistakable voice and unflinching words (‘Loving you means I don’t love myself’). After a verse, they change gear into a much faster chorus where the presence of gas is used as a metaphor for a toxic relationship. In the second verse, the gas/situation has gone and breathing has become easier. Simple, but effective. Reboundaries is brisker and less crushing but the words (as the title implies) still deal with relationships gone wrong. The title track is even brisker with a punky two-chord verse leading to a fairly defined chorus. It’s something of a banger. Wood’s riffs are particularly impressive on this, as is the band’s songwriting. It’s probably a bit obvious given the gender and nationality of both bands’ singers but it reminds me of Silverfish a bit. Into The Wood is a slower and heavier slog with touches of Sonic Youth in the verse. When the chorus comes in it is with all the detuned power of Doom. The essential difference is that it’s not about bongs or Lovecraft (I’m just kidding, Doom has a bit more to offer than that). Wakefield’s heroically hefty bass leads us through Revenant, another slow burner, this time they sound a bit more like Pentagram. Like Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs they have used 70s metal as a kicking off point but their delivery and lyrics are very current. Hindsight has a more conversational lyric and a more frantic feel although with their customary changes of pace. Again, there is a slight hint of Sonic Youth in Wood’s guitar playing. Punk music played by metalheads is how Splits comes across – a 3-minute explosion with more concentration on the riffs than punk music would usually allow. The Measure Of A Man is even shorter and features strong drumming from Graham Hebson, a breathless vocal and tight playing from the guitarists. The album finishes with two longer songs. First up is A Portrait Of The Father which includes a splendid section where the drums drop out and you are left with the wonderful guitars and vocals. The drums return to build the song up again but it drops away. Young’s voice, after a fairly uncompromising performance on the rest of the album, is more restrained here. The final track, The Body, has a more intricate riff twisting beneath Young’s vocal. Again, the song drops away, this time leaving the vocal and bass. This is not only effective but it also really sells the second half of the song where the rest of the band crash in. It’s a great use of dynamics. There’s also a great chord in this song. I’m not sure what it is right now, but I’ll probably steal it.

Some Things Take Work is a solid second from Lower Slaughter. Like Pigsx7 they are taking heavy music and making it modern by adding new and different touches to it. Also like Pigs, they combine a tight and adventurous band with a distinctive vocalist and lyricist that prevents them from settling down into any particular stylistic comfort zone.

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