West Midlands purveyors of modern, hard-rocking metal Left For Red have spent the 2 years since the release of their “Mercy Flight” EP gigging relentlessly across the UK. After teasing us with new tracks showcased at their more recent gigs (perhaps most notably, the Birmingham leg of Headbangers’ Balls) they are finally ready to unleash their new material in the form of their first long-player, “All Things Known And Buried”.
The album starts (after an atmospheric intro) with lead single “Master Of The Game” and if, like me, your main acquaintance with this song has come via tinny laptop speakers whilst checking out the video online, you’ll be delighted to discover those extra nuances that make it a serious beast of a tune. Bassist Dan flexes his formidable bassy chops with some dirty fuzzy sounds on “Crooked Path” and (my particular favourite) “Shatter,” which also showcases some superb vocal harmonies and the skilled guitar riffs you would expect from the birthplace of Heavy Metal. There’s even a chance to catch your breath with the piano-led interlude of “Dystopia Rising” before the blasting beats of “Utopia” kick in and smack you right around the proverbials. Closing track “Solace In Memories” rounds the album off nicely, building up to an epic, grungy chorus and guitar solo.
Left For Red’s strength lies in their unique, progressive take on heavy metal. It’s fair to say that they have an instantly recognisable sound that is all their own, and this is partly thanks to frontman LC’s incredible, distinctive clean vocals. It’s difficult to think of another vocalist that sounds like him, and this could well be LFR’s key to distinguishing themselves from their peers. All in all, it’s a solid first album that strengthens the still-growing reputation of the Metal Monkeys from Dudley. After two EPs they’ve shown that not only can they hold your attention for 10 tracks, but they can also do it without watering down their style or resorting to filler material. And they’ve managed to accomplish this whilst still gigging like men possessed. In that grand tradition, expect to see them live on a stage near you in 2015! Be sure to check them out!
After two EPs they’ve shown that not only can they hold your attention for 10 tracks, but they can also do it without watering down their style or resorting to filler material.