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Flesh & Bone Records
Release Date: July 14, 2015
Seeing this cassette tagged on bandcamp as post-rock, shoegaze and post-hardcore I had pretty high expectations as I started to listen. The artwork appears to be face appearing in flames, but the 1990’s school photo background makes me thing of a scene on Mars. The cassette is available on three different splatter variants on black. The gold splatter variant looks the nicest to me.
As a result of this intro, before I heard a note I expected sprawling, massive songs driven by loud guitars. This is more of a band effort though than just a wall of guitars. Lume has found that little pocket where shoegaze, indie rock and post-rock meet. Songs tend to start loud, get a little quieter in the middle and then get louder at the end. Every instrument is easily picked out in the mix. For the most part this works out to Lume’s advantage. The vocals are clean and farther forward than I would prefer, but they are well delivered and on point across all four songs. I get the feeling that Lume translates really well in very dark rooms. Initially, I listened to this record at normal volume, but found that the louder it is played the stronger it becomes. I then searched youtube and found videos of Lume playing live and it fit exactly what I was expecting.
The first two tracks of this cassette really give a great picture of what Lume is. “Now and Then” features a riff/solo in the middle that reminds me of Starflyer 59’s Gold album. It’s a powerful song that opens this tape off in a very solid way. The song is well sung and maintains an emotional level that should be very powerful live. “Built a Home” is my favorite track of the bunch. It’s built on a solid riff that continues the My Bloody Valentine/Shoegaze comparisons. The way it is sung is what gets me, showcasing the most variety in delivery, “Built a Home” has more bite to it. It ends with a sprawling wall of noise that fades into a sampled vocal line that I wasn’t able to place. “Loose Leaf” showcases a bit of how this band could come off live. A live recording, it opens with what appears to be a wall of noise, but loses some of the power it could have due to how far forward in the mix the drums are. The last track “I Put a Spell on You” is guitar and vocals only. It does what it can to build with the limited accompaniment, but never really goes anywhere. It has the barebones of a solid song, but could do with filing out with the whole band.
Lume tours quite a bit according to their tumblr, so go catch them live. And pick up this tape from Flesh & Bone and listen to it loud.
Reviewed by: Rob 1340