Lucifer – Lucifer II
Review by Adam McCann
Century Media Records – 2018 – Doom Metal
Lucifer arrived on the scene in 2014 following the disbandment of The Oath releasing their eponymous debut the following year to a rousing critical acclaim. Lucifer toured heavily with the likes of Paradise Lost, gaining much attention before suddenly parting ways with both founding guitarist and drummer Andrew Prestridge and Gaz Jennings before also saying farewell to Relapse Records. Although this had generated rumours of a Lucifer split, a one album wonder, but no, before too long Lucifer were back with Nicke Andersson, former guitarist of The Hellacopters and a new record deal with Century Media Records releasing their latest album ‘Lucifer II’.
Straight from the start, the changes can be immediately seen; ‘Lucifer II’ is a lot more upbeat than its predecessor and nowhere near as doom laden. This gives the album a much more of a 70’s throwback feel than a classic doom album, in particular, this sound is explored with the addition of a Hammond organ into tracks such as ‘California Son’ and ‘Dreamer’ which would seriously appeal to fans of Uriah Heep. Furthermore, the vocals of Johanna Sadonis are much more worn in and fitting to the sound of Lucifer and with a bigger budget from Century Media, the production allows Sadonis to roam and push her vocals to the forefront, especially during ‘Before the Sun’, ‘Faux Pharaoh’ and the excellent ‘Dreamer’.
As expected from a band which leans heavily on doom, there is a lot of Black Sabbath worship on ‘Lucifer II’. This makes the album feel warm and familiar; ‘Dancing With Mr. D’ touches on the riff for ‘Into the Void’ whilst ‘Before the Sun’ has all the heavy blues feel of ‘A New Day Yesterday’ by Jethro Tull. However, this subtle change in sound may have fans of the band’s debut album initially scratching their heads, but after a few plays, ‘Lucifer II’ becomes just as endearing.
‘Lucifer II’ may fall just below the standard set by the debut album, yet in all honesty, that was a high bar to reach. Lucifer have once again delivered an album which is exceptionally good and enjoyable, and it is certainly an album for any fan of female fronted doom.
Rating : 88/100
MHF Magazine/Adam McCann