23 September 2021

Lord of the Lost – Judas

Releasedate:  02 July 2021 
Label: Napalm Records

LORD OF THE LOST return with their seventh studio album, JUDAS. Those who follow LOTL know that the band always strives to move forward with each piece, never repeating themselves and always expanding horizons. So, I was beyond curious how JUDAS would sound like and what surprises we would get.

“Don’t judge a book by its cover” would be the motto of JUDAS. This is not a concept album or an album about a historical representation of the facts – even though the band worked with a theology professor for this one -. As a matter of fact, it gives us different perspectives of JUDAS as a traitor and a savior. This is represented beautifully in two parts, the damnation and the salvation.

 If I would describe this masterpiece in a few words, I would say we have a record that is organic, sinister, dynamic and well… different. During our interview a while ago, Chris also understood and elaborated on what I meant by ‘different’ and ‘organic’. From the choirs to every instrument you hear on JUDAS, the band recorded everything themselves, making JUDAS what it is.

Highlights

JUDAS comes with many surprising elements (ha!); the choirs, the beautiful female operatic vocals (In The Field of Blood, Argent) the groovy tunes (Viva Vendetta), the aggressive tunes (Priest) and the epic and orchestral arrangements (Born With a Broken Heart, For They Know Not What They Do) that last more than an hour! There is that sadness and darkness at times but also a certain uptempo and brightness, making this record quite versatile and catchy!

Speaking of catchy elements, I couldn’t help but go back in time to the 80s while listening to some songs. Take a look at The 13th or And It Was Night and you will instantly go back in time. I wasn’t surprised by this at all though since LOTL’s influences range from many styles, including the 80s. Another highlight is the perfect harmony of the rhythm between the vocals, drums and guitars. The Gospel of Judas, In The Field of Blood and 2000 Years a Pyre are perfect examples of this. The way the notes and the instruments hit and complete each other is fantastic and insane!

Damnation or Salvation?

Surely there should be no choosing here as both CDs offer a different perspective thematically and musically. Damnation is more epic, diverse, orchestral and starts out aggressively and fast with Priest. So this CD might be on a more frequent rotation for the classic ‘rock/metal’ fans of this band. Salvation, on the other hand, is more dramatic and ‘mainstream’ to a certain extent. A big highlight on this second CD is definitely the first track The Gospel of Judas with its catchy elements and the right amount of rock’n’roll. Personally, I fell in love with Damnation more as most of my favorite songs happen to be in this first CD, and it feels more like a soundtrack overall.

Conclusion

It doesn’t matter if you are a fan of LOTL or not, I recommend JUDAS to everyone who is looking for some good quality metal that knows no boundaries and is catchy! Indeed, we don’t always need the complexity to be blown away and these guys do this perfectly. So get it and be ready to get impressed!

Line up:
  • Chris Harms – vocals, guitars, cello
  • Pi Stoffers – guitars
  • Class Grenayde – bass
  • Gared Dirge – piano, synthesizer, percussion, guitars
  • Niklas Kahl – drums

Tracklist

CD1: DAMNATION
01. Priest
02. For They Know Not What They Do
03. Your Star Has Led You Astray
04. Born With A Broken Heart
05. The 13th
06. In The Field of Blood
07. 2000 Years A Pyre
08. Death Is Just A Kiss Away
09. The Heart is a Traitor
10. Euphoria
11. Be Still and Know
12. The Death of All Colours

CD2: SALVATION
01. The Gospel of Judas
02. Viva Vendetta
03. Argent
04. The Heartbeat of the Devil
05. And It Was Night
06. My Constellation
07. The Ashes of Flowers
08. Iskarioith
09. A War Within
10. A World Where We Belong
11. Apoktastasis
12. Work of Salvation

Links:

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Dive Deep Into JUDAS – Our Interview with Lord of the Lost