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Lorna Shore, Immortal - album review

American outfit Lorna Shore are hoping to break away from their early deathcore labels and build a more expansive sound with their new record, Immortal.

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The album cover for Lorna Shore's Immortal

They are currently embroiled in difficulties given vocalist CJ McCreery's immediate removal from the band due to criminal allegations which can easily be found via the internet. Yet they have pushed on with the release regardless and will continue the upcoming tour as planned.

Vast walls of sound; haunting, symphonic, Dracula-esque instrumental interludes; and the heaviest dose of machine-gun percussion await listeners in this dark and hard-hitting aural landscape that will likely send the fiant-hearted screeching to the hills.

Born out of the dankest, eeriest cave, with tracks like This Is Hell stirring the pot with the spikiest of ladles there is nowhere to hide. Here, caustic guitars bore a hole in the skull alongside the thunderous drumming of Austin Archey as one huge, organ-led overlay hits you after another. It's Halloween stretched out for a year.

The opening title track is built from similar impressions, but allows those huge, symphonia sounds to last a little longer at a more leisurely pace. The guitars of Adam De Micco and Andrew O’Connor dual with ease and style, before the bass is cranked up to take us to new depths of despair. Then, with an explosion the next wall of sound slams back into focus and we're back on top of the crest of that wave. It's brilliantly done.

Some of the tracks are overly stodgy and like wading through treacle - Misery System starts to feel like an unnecessary war with your senses after a while, and Hollow Sentence relies a little too much on the percussion elements and could be shorter. Yet there is a good ending to this.

The swooping, soaring feel to Obsession is a mesmerising lesson as the guitars lift things to a whole new level through some exceptional melodies. And then King Ov Deception is one of the straight-out thrashiest tracks as the riffs bash into one another like a circle pit encapsulated in song.

The ferocious Relentless Torment is both terrifying and engrossing in equal measure.

Rating: 6/10

Lorna Shore will play Birmingham's Mama Roux's on March 15 as part of the Beyond Creation event alongside Beyond Creation, Decapitated and Ingested

A statement from the band regarding their decision to release the album with McCreery's vocals and go ahead with the tour can be found on their Facebook page.

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