The LP is the second album from Laime Pilniga (The LP), a rock quartet from Latvia. The performances are very good on the album, showing off a mixture of genres, from Dream Theater-like prog to Zeppelin and Rush-like hard rock, and there are even some funk and R&B elements that appear here and there.
The album is concise and tight, each song packing in lots of information, but with most of the songs clocking in between three-four minutes, not an easy feat. The album opens the appropriately titled “Prelude” showing off buzzy electric guitars, large open acoustic guitars and very dry drums playing a march forward. It is followed by “Murmurs” which has shredding guitars, an excellent contrapuntal bass line and a great rock vocal. There are some elements of Zeppelin in the instrumental sections with the interplay of the guitars, bass and drums. The lyrics on this song tend to be more “flower-power” than the rest of the album or the music would imply, but even though they might seem incongruent, they are delivered with precision and passion.
“Dead man’s grip” starts with some interesting stereo panning on the acoustic guitar while it plays a neo-classical like pattern. The synth strings in the background elevate the “epicness” of the song. There are some strange flams earlier in the song, but towards the middle they really shine during the synth solo. The song has a great build and when the singer enters again, it’s as if the band is channeling all kinds of mythological storms on a mountaintop somewhere. “World of calculation” is a math rock piece that has some Rush like elements in its phrasing and synth tones. The backing vocals have a great Beatle-like quality, the lead vocal dips its toes into David Lee Roth screams occasionally, the guitar solo is good, but the drums are the true star here with great flourishes and builds.
“Black suited funeral people” has a Fall Out Boy vibe to the vocal as well as the drums. The combination of the dance groove, a clever synth part, and the distorted guitar function well together to make a heavy but grooving track. “Fire within” is a monstrous build over ¾ time with droning guitars and a powerful vocal. “War” has a Stevie Wonder-like bass line, some circuit-y keyboards and funk guitar chords, but turns into a heavy metal shred-a-thon near the end with some searing guitar work. There’s an acoustic guitar that lends itself more towards a bluegrass sound when it doubles the lead guitar and it makes for quite an interesting amalgamation of sounds.
When the album moves toward a softer sound, it does lose a bit of steam. “Conscience talks” starts out as almost an R&B ballad in the phrasing of the melody and vibe, but once the band enters with Dio-esque fury, the mood moves back towards hard rock, which serves the tone of the singer much better. The song adds a dance-y disco open hi-hat groove part way through before moving into a fuzzed out harmonized guitar solo. Each section is interesting, but it would be nice to hear each individual section fleshed out more rather than smashed together. “Apocaliptic intimacy” also has an R&B quality to it in melody and the guitar/bass pattern. The drums fall in and out of time throughout the song losing the groove and drive in moments.
“Running in the circles” is a fantastic closer for the album that really showcases all the strengths of the band from the nimble guitar and bass riffs, powerfully emotional drumming, and the grit and strength of the vocal. The chorus is catchy and the band locks in some interesting parts throughout. The band has plenty of chops to showcase throughout the album in their performances and instrumental parts but this song really showcases their songwriting and is the best track on the album.
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