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Lowlives “Freaking Out” Album Review By Luz Figueroa

LOWLIVES band

In the spirited crucible of modern rock, a seismic rumble has been felt, courtesy of Lowlives and their debut opus, Freaking Out. This quartet, with Lee Downer on vocals and guitar, Luke Johnson behind the drum kit, Jaxon Moore shredding on guitar, and Steve Lucarelli holding down the bass, crafts a sound that’s as familiar as it is fresh, digging deep into the bed of ’90s grunge and alternative while etching their distinctive mark.

From the outset, Freaking Out grabs listeners by the collar with its title track, a high-octane anthem that sets the bar for what’s to follow. It’s like being struck by a bolt of lightning; the energy is palpable, pulsating through your veins. The riffs are rugged, the pace frenetic, and Downer’s vocal delivery strikes a delicate balance between raw power and melodic finesse, reminiscent yet wholly unique.

Liar and Getting High on Being Low dip into slightly softer territories but lose none of the ferocity that defines Lowlives. Here, the band demonstrates their knack for nuanced songwriting – blending hard-hitting riffs with introspective lyrics, the tracks are like storms that soothe as much as they disrupt.

Swan Song, a pivotal track, is a rollercoaster of sound. It starts with a lurid grittiness before transforming into a reflective, almost serene, interlude. The return to form is swift, though, as the track builds back up to a crescendo that showcases Downer at his vocal peak.

Loser emerges as an anthem for the outcasts, wrapped in pop sensibilities that betray the track’s deeper, grunge-tinged roots. You Don’t Care roars back with a punch, a testament to the band’s ability to channel raw emotion into music that’s both aggressive and cathartic.

Out of Step and Closer Than You Know display Lowlives‘ duality – the former a tempest of aggression, the latter a more introspective piece that doesn’t skimp on intensity. It’s within these contrasts that the album finds its soul, bridging the gap between rage and reflection.

Damien, perhaps the pinnacle of the album’s ferocity, does not merely ride the wave but becomes the tempest, propelling the listener towards the final track, Vertigo. This closer is a departure from the tumult that precedes it. It’s a contemplative track that allows for a moment of respite, a chance to absorb the journey just undertaken.

At times, Freaking Out and its homage to the icons of ’90s rock feels too overt, skirting the edge of derivativeness. Yet, even in these moments, there’s a sense that Lowlives is not merely imitating but conversing with their influences, creating a dialogue that spans decades.

In essence, Freaking Out is a paradox – it is both a raucous celebration of rock’s past and a bold stride into its future. Lowlives have managed to craft an album that resonates with the force of nostalgia yet pulses with contemporary urgency. It’s this balancing act that they perform so adeptly, making Freaking Out a compelling listen.

While not without its minor missteps, the album stands as a powerful statement of intent from a band that clearly has much more to offer. Freaking Out is an exhilarating ride, showcasing a band unafraid to wear their heart on their sleeve while tearing through the fabric of modern rock. It’s a bold debut that hints at even greater things to come.

Luz’s Rating: 8/10

Lowlives album

Tracklist:
Freaking Out 3:29
Liar 3:48
Getting High on Being Low 3:21
Swan Dive 5:03
Loser 3:23
You Don’t Care 3:34
Out of Step 4:27
Closer Than You Know 4:50
Damien 3:52
Vertigo 4:13

Band Members:
Lee Downer – Vocals/Guitar
Jaxon Moore – Guitar
Steve Lucarelli – Bass
Luke Johnson – Drums

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