CD REVIEW: AS LIONS – Selfish Age

Label: Better Noise Records

Release Date: January 20, 2017

Rating: 9.5/10

Reviewed by: Todd “Toddstar” Jolicoeur

After taking As Lions EP Aftermath for a spin and reviewing it, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on the full length from these young rockers.  That EP had four tracks, which are a part of this killer release that builds on those tracks without deviating from the winning formula they created.  Opening track on this disc and title track for the EP “Aftermath” delivers a solid rock sound that draws you in and keeps you engaged.  The tempo is cool, the different textures and tones give the song depth that allows the vocals to swirl in the mix with the guitars and rhythm section.  “The Suffering” takes the momentum of the previous track and carries it forward with killer guitar riffs and a thunderous bottom end that is punctuated by heavy handed drumming.  Also from the EP, “Deathless” comes at you from first note to last while showing a slightly different side and sound of the band.  The heavier chorus gives the song and band an edgier sound without leaning into screamo / emo territory.  This song should go over well in a live setting, with fist and lights in the air.  “White Flags was the first single from the EP and one listen through you understand why.  The driving rhythm of the track gets the foot tapping without becoming a breakneck rocker.  The vocals are perfectly matched against the chugging riffs and the solid bottom end.  “World On Fire” opens with a beautiful piano piece that adds another dimension to the band’s sound as well as another sonic weapon to the bands arsenal.  While a bit mellower due to the prominent piano, this is one of the stronger songs, thanks to the emotionally driven lyrics that permeate the sound of the track.  Disc closer “The Great Escape” takes us into slightly darker territory musically without shifting the feel of the disc as a whole.  The vocals are solid and mesh well with the guitars and rhythm section.  The track picks up momentum at the pre-chorus and doesn’t let up until the song is over and you find yourself reaching to kick this disc off all over again… and again… and again.

“Bury My Dead” starts off a bit mellower than most tracks on the disc, but the song builds in intensity as the chorus approaches.  The band kicks in behind Austin Dickinson’s vocals and the track grows with each passing note and lyrics.  The second verse is more powerful than the first and prepares us for the breakdown and bridge.  The discs title track “Selfish Age” is a more melodic track that leans heavier on the bands musical ability, with the guitars featured more prominently in the mix.  The vocals wrap themselves around the riffs, which are supported by a killer tempo and groove.  This is a bit different than some of the songs, but fits well on the collection.  “Pieces” delivers another great song that is built around fun guitars and a killer vibe from the rhythm section.  The bass lines are solid and give the track added punch through the verse.  The vocals are driven and keep the track flowing.  “One By One” slightly twists the mood and sound of other tracks on the disc and give them a different feel while remaining cohesive within mold of the other songs.  The vocals are solid and take the track by the balls at times, charging the song during the bridge and into the choruses that follow.  “The Fall” is one of my favorite tracks on the disc thanks to a great riff that kicks the song off and sets the stage for the rest of the band and the vocals to jump into action.  The chorus is contagious and fun without becoming light and poppy.  This is another track from the band that should go over perfect in a live situation.  Now we have to wait and see what the bands 2017 tour plans look like – hopefully we can all wrap our arms and ears around these great songs at our favorite local venue this summer!

Tracklisting: Aftermath – The Suffering – Bury My Dead – Deathless – Selfish Age – White Flags – Pieces – World On Fire – One By One – The Fall – The Great Escape

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SELFISH AGE – ITUNES

CD REVIEW: AS LIONS - Selfish Age

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