Review: “In Between Misery & Apathy” by Lordis

Florida natives Lordis returned with their follow up to 2015’s “Thin Line” EP at the end of July. The self-described Doom Groove or Nu-Metalcore quintet have been building up to the release for some time with single “S//o\\S (Six of Swords)” dropping its anchor way back in 2016. The 9 track affair was recorded by Guitarist Mike Clampitt before being Mixed & Mastered by Cody Stewart at Reforce Media. Oh and that Album Artwork? Its by Mason Starkey.

The sound of rainfall, followed by some dark Nu-Metal electronics accompany Brandon Thomas’s raspy rap-screams as opener “Dead Drop” kicks in. The electronics are quickly replaced by “Follow The Leader” era KoRn lead guitar work over a bouncy DJent infused rhythm guitar section. It’s slow, dark and designed to create an atmosphere of tension. Which it does to the letter. “Bad Seed” continues the guitar balance but regularly drops into a guitar break for the buried electronics and programming to surface. There are a couple of decent DJent rhythm breakdowns and Brandon Thomas’s introspective lyrics about living with no purpose are dropping with agnst. “Dreameater” has a clicky downtuned bass sound, while Taylor’s throat shreddingly and consistent higher pitched uncleans suddenly drop into a Deathcore growl and everything takes a sudden turn left. The faster paced mid section suddenly takes the band into Loathe territory before dropping into a melodic passage and driving back up into blast beats from sticksman Jeremy Torres as the song genre leaps into full on Deathcore in places.

“Empress (Your Love)” squeals into life with some driven Deathcore inspired rhythms buried underneath those KoRn-esq leads. You might think from the title of the track that this was a love song. Far from it. “I’ve become addicted. To self inflicted. Agony” screams Thomas during the agnst ridden opening verse. There is a bizarre almost Jazzy break before we get breakdown upon breakdown piling in with some powerful downtuned downtempo Deathcore guitar work pre-chorus. A second almost Jazzy break, this time with vocals overlaying them is a challenging listen but Thomas then breaks that with the return of the Deathcore growls and some chugging guitars. Pre-release single “Deadbeat King” features a guest vocal from Alex Stankewitz of Loser. Bursting into life with a faster paced intro and Deathcore inspired guitar work before upping the ante with blast beats and higher energy where the band previously slowed things down works a treat. A skull crushing slow breakdown and “Bleigh!” lead into an off kilter and eerie verse that is built to unsettle. “S//o\\S (Six of Swords)” takes the Nu-Metal introspective lyrics to a new level while hinting at the sort of material Gift Giver were dropping in their early years. The song fits the mold well and rarely strays from the path with succato pause breaks between chunky breakdowns highlighted with leads.

“Consume Me by Night” uses Deathcore growls from the first verse while depicting a calling from hell. Switching things up into an almost black metal segment before dropping back to the bands usual core sound is an interesting twist on the formula of the album. Another almost Jazzy break theatens to ruin the flow but it’s thankfully pulled back with an throat shredding gutterals and downtempo breakdowns. “Hope or Death” has a familiar intro that at time of writing we can’t place, before changing tactics into some Todd Daugherty bass heavy lines and some Metallic Hardcore riffs broken up by some incredible footwork from drummer Jeremy Torres. The song itself includes the vocal line that makes the song title in it’s closing statement. “The Dance of Black & White” is a slow rummble through downtempo Deathcore riffage with a heavier reliance on gutteral unclean vocal rather than the higher pitched alternative. It’s gradual increase in pace and stompy quality is suitably fitting to close out the album.

There is a distinct evolution from “Thin Line” to “In Between Misery & Apathy” and while some have tagged Lordis as Nu-Metalcore, joining the Ded revival isn’t something that Lordis are going to be doing anytime soon. Underlying the Nu-Metal introspective lyrics and KoRn-esq leads is a far heavier sound, the sound that appears further and further into the album. There are hints at Deathcore and the Doom Groove sound is deep rooted once you strip away some of the other sounds. Stand outs like “Deadbeat King” will stand the band in good stead going forward [7.5/10]

Track Listing

  1. “Dead Drop”
  2. “Bad Seed”
  3. “Dreameater”
  4. “Empress (Your Love)”
  5. “Deadbeat King” Ft. Alex Stankewitz of Loser
  6. “S//o\\S (Six of Swords)”
  7. “Consume Me by Night”
  8. “Hope or Death”
  9. “The Dance of Black & White”

“In Between Misery & Apathy” by Lordis is out now via Chugcore Promotions and available over at bandcamp.

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