Roundtable Review: The Beast of Left and Right by Lazer/Wulf
Posted by RiffRaff
Label: Retro Futurist Records
Release Date: 15 July 2014
Length: 50 minutes
Genre: Experimental Prog Metal
Studio Albums: There was a hole here. It’s gone now (EP), 2012; The Void That Isn’t (2009)
WarpRider – The progressive prowess is high with this one. This talented crew creates a spine chilling blast of cool melodies and interesting time signatures. Their style is almost purely instrumental, but there are some vocals present here and there and make a nice backdrop. To keep things interesting, they move around seamlessly from jazzy, to progressive, to quite thrashy. The Beast of Left and Right is a musically all-encompassing album of damn near perfection. 4.5
Atleastimhousebroken – I have to give Lazer/Wulf credit for the insane scope of their concept on The Beast of Left and Right. According to their PR blurb, they set out to create a palindrome of a record. And before I get into semantics (I am an English teacher so this stuff does irk me 😉 ) I’ll say conceptually they pulled the idea off quite well from a symmetrical standpoint. The prog is in full force throughout the whole, nearly all instrumental record. It starts of very mathematical and techy before delving into a more smooth, groovy middle and then ending on a techy note again. Basically if you were to pop this record on, put it on repeat all, and let ‘er rip, you’d be riding on one fun, never-ending roller-coaster. Another neat trick is if you were to start the album from the middle track and count either up or down, your end point would always be the same, just in a different key.
Now, don’t be worrying about things on the record being incredibly samey. Instead of just copy/pasting the inverse of a song, Lazer/Wulf takes, say a drum pattern from track 2 and explores what can be done with it in an opposing mood on track 8. Even if you don’t get into the whole polarity concept, Beast is simply some fun and heady prog metal that should get your ears bleeding and face melting. 4.5
Irmelinis – This funky, jazzy, progressive type of music works well with me. It varies between being chilled out, dark and angry to extremely groovy and it doesn’t bother me one bit that they are almost completely instrumental; they keep things interesting throughout the songs. A very nice listen. 3.5
ChristopherMammal – What we have here is a dazzling work of art, an abstract and gleaming metal sculpture. It is deeply engrossing, constantly interesting and musically captivating. It’s complex and highly technical, an album for the metal avant gardistes. The discontinuities in melody and rhythm may not pull in huge numbers of classic metal fans, but anyone with an ear for progressive and experimental metal is quite likely to find Lazer/Wulf as fascinating as I do. The band sometimes over-emphasizes technique above melody; but so do the more extreme math rock and math metal bands, and I love them too. The band never leaves you floundering. Their many digressions always return to the underlying heart of each composition. About that technique – these guys are as remarkably gifted as any musicians I can think of. 4.5
A Metal State of Mind Score – 4.25 out of 5
The Beast of Left and Right releases on July 15th, 2014 through Retro Futurist Records. If you happen to be in Europe this summer either for vacation or you just happen to live there, catch them on tour with the outstanding Kylesa (Dates Here). Also, be a chap and give ’em a ‘like’ on Facebook.