Gloom is home, so why not become a social hazard whilst you’re at it?
FFO: Slipknot, Loathe, God Complex, and heavy-ass breakdowns
Make no mistake, Lotus Eater have had a whirlwind of a career since their inception omly a couple of years ago, but being the first band Hopeless Records have signed that’s totally different to practically every other band on the label, in 25 years (old school Avenged Sevenfold was the heaviest they had signed beforr Lotus Eater), they were most definitely going to turn heads with their dark, and violent music.
To put it bluntly, Social Hazard is an EP that demonstrates fantastic musicality, complete with songs that’ll make you mosh ’til you drop. The clarity of the recording is shown perfectly here, a band that play 7 strings tuned to stupidly low tunings is always something I can get behind, and Lotus Eater are no exception to the rule.
The EP kicks off with ‘Thug’, a track that sounds like its inspired by the eeriness of video game series like Silent Hill and Resident Evil, before a thunderous instrumental kicks in, complete with a breakdown at the end that sets the tone for the rest of the EP. ‘Thug’ fades quickly into the first full track on Social Hazard, ‘Yuck’. Jamie McLees’s vocals kick serious ass in this track, and you can most definitely tell the fury behind his voice when he spits words like ‘Yuck The World, Fuck The Place’ with venomous aplomb. The track has a Northlane inspired vibe as well, made complete from Douglas Park and Alan Ross showing their guitar abilities in the bridge and how class this band actually is.
‘The Fear’ is one of those tracks that makes you want to start a circle pit in your living room the minute you hear it, which is always a good sign, all the while, Cameron Humphries thudding pace behind the kit and Craig McCulloch demonstrating how the bass guitar and drum kit can be utilised to thunderous effect, working in sync with one another, I found I couldn’t stop head banging from start to finish with this track, and it’s easy to see why.
Onto ‘Freak’ next, and the amount of riffage in this track is sensational, that it stayed with me long after I actually finished Social Hazard. This track is also peppered with some of the most filthy breakdowns on the EP, thudding with a slipknot-esque pace to each track so far, culminating in a ferocious ending which leads into my standout song on Social Hazard – ‘Mother’.
Mother is the EP at its darkest, a tale of an abusive relationship between mother and son. This track is frantic all of the way through, but it’s how groovy that intro riff is, that had me hooked from the start with just how sublime the guitar work is on this record. Who needs shreddy-ass solos when you have pure groove in every single riff in this song. Absolutely sensational. Jamie McLees performance on this track ties the instrumental together, as you’re taken on a journey of rather dark proportions.
Once Mother finishes, you’re given a little respite in Words.Nothing, an interlude that retains the dark tone from Mother, before you’re slapped in the face by the opening to Jawless, the last track on Social Hazard. This song could have fit easily on 2017’s self titled debut EP and this is totally down to the fact that this is one of the only moments where there’s a clean chorus (like Dead to Me), which is never a bad thing, showing that Lotus Eater have plenty of depth in their sound. Jawless is definitely not without the ferocity of the other tracks either with the pace kept to a sensible rate throughout, before you’re given one of the filthiest breakdowns in 2019. This track is also featured on the ‘Got Djent?’ Playlist curated by spotify, and it’s easy to see why.
VERDICT: 9/10 – A must if you haven’t listened to them before.
In summary, Lotus Eater have crafted a masterpiece that is up there for me in my list of best records released in 2019, with my only gripe being that it feels too short, but I guess time flies when you’re having fun… In a rage inducing, blood pumping, spin kicking kind of way. I am eager for more music already, and will definitely be seeing the band again when they tour with Austrailian metal stalwarts, Make Them Suffer next month.
You can listen to Social Hazard yourself, which is out now, via all major streaming services, and bandcamp too! and you can support the band by picking up some sweet looking merch from their BigCartel:
Lotus Eater’s Social Media:
- @lotuseateruk for Instagram and Twitter.