‘Black Mountain Rising’

It’s been a long time coming people, but I’m pleased to report Lifer have come out of hibernation to gives us album number two… ‘Black Mountain Rising’ and we’ve been given an exclusive copy ahead of its release, 5th September to be precise. Although we’ve kindly been given a copy to review, we did have to promise to buy a physical copy of the album when it’s officially released, which we’ll happily do as supporting great bands like Lifer is a must, to ensure the future of the genre lives on.

Lifer - Black Mountain Rising

Although this album is four years in the making, it actually only took the band seven days to record, which begs the question, what the f**k have these wizards of sound been up too in all that time and I’ve been reliably informed “gigging” that’s what! These boys just love to rock out and with a new album on the horizon, that usually means one thing, more gigs will follow, YIPPY!!

Lifer are well-known in the underground metal community and rightfully so, as these guys are super fun off stage, but on it, their persona turns a full 180 to super serious and ultra professional! Many metal heads are already familiar with Lifer’s sound, but for those of you who are yet to discover these little red dragons from the west (Wales) if you’re a fan of bands such as Pantera and Down (where I believer the band got their name from “Lifer” featured on the album Nola) and more up-to-date bands like Orange Goblin and Planet of Zeus, then read on!

As this is an album review for Lifer, I thought it only polite to give it it’s first airing dressed only in my underwear…..for absolutely no reason whatsoever, however, in hind sight, this was probably a bad idea, as the opening track “Sorry Bloody Sorry” lures you into a false sense of security and reduces me to a quivering child hiding in a corner in no time, it’s sinister, a brown stain appears! Someone has a new effects peddle, what an opener!

What comes next “Bastard Sons of Sabbath” soon delivers a swift kick in true Lifer fashion, 100% yes, this is what I’ve been waiting for, I already know this is going to be a stonking album, all forty one minutes of it, where’s my air guitar!

There’s no let up in ferociousness where track three is concerned either, that bass line, tasty “Wired” hits home and hits hard! Strap yourselves in and scream if you wanna go faster, faster, FASTER!

Tracks “Burn Them Down”, “Cease to Exist” and “Shake With The Devil” have all seemingly been crafted with the sole intent to maim and torture the neck muscles!

Album title and track “Black Mountain Rising” continues to give you a good flogging. From what I can gather, like most countries with historic ties to England, Wales too hides a dark and shady side, which this song was inspired by. I won’t give too much away, but the clue is in the album’s artwork. As far as the track goes, it’s like climbing Snowdon with a 10 tonne weight on your back….HEAVY!

“Year Of The Hog” was released a few weeks ago, via the bands Souncloud page and is still available to listen to and I strongly advise you do so, as this track wet my appetite for more and I can assure you, this is a great track but is by no means the only great track on this album. I LOVE THIS TRACK!

As a fan of this band, for me, the stand out track on this album has to be “Words To The Wise” it’s six and a half minutes of pure genius and is like no other track Lifer have produced before. This masterclass in brutality has managed to capture that live essence they have become famous for. This Riff fuelled adrenaline pumping ride that comes in around four minutes in will make you smile from ear to ear, without running the risk of losing your legs come the live shows, I suggest setting your mast’s high, as the force created by windmilling hair will send you on a journey like no other!

Come the last track I had to lie down and let my heart rate decrease, thankfully the track titled “Diwedd” gives us a welcomed rest-bite and an opportunity to cool down. Loosely translated from Welsh to English, this track means the end, and the end it is, but this track is like a little bit of Lifer poetry! It’s almost like they’ve translated a passage from the Black Book of Carmarthen and turned it into musical form, magic!

A special mention to both the technical masters behind creating this album and they are Lifers very own Web Lifer and Tim Hamill, a mastering god, who have successfully managed to captured the true Lifer spirit and packaged it up in this album, which will no doubt feature in my Top 10 releases of 2015, already, it’s a classic!

Album: ‘Black Mountain Rising’ will be released via House of Doom Records on the 5th September 2015.

Track Order:

1. Sorrow Bloody Sorrow 2. Bastard Sons of Sabbath 3. Wired 4. Shake with the Devil 5. Words to the Wise 6. Cease to Exist 7. Year of the Hog 8. Black Mountain Rising 9. Burn Them Down 10. Diwedd

Rating 9.2/10

Review by Jay Hawkins (JJ Photography UK)