Lostalone – Shapes Of Screams ★★★★☆


Artist: Lostalone
Title: Shapes Of Screams
Release Date: April 7th

Between 2005 and 2012, the band LostAlone, went through several sweeping changes. From changing members, to changing labels, the group has still managed to show a marked resilience. They’ve been met with accolades from some of the best music publications in the world. Yet, despite this, receiving several awards, and the skills that led them to opening for such bands as Thirty Seconds to Mars, Paramore, and My Chemical Romance, the band is still largely unknown beyond diehard rock fans.

Two years have passed, and the band has crowd funded their third release, a gutsy move that will hopefully garner them even greater rewards. While the previous titles portrayed a sense of otherworldliness, the band’s endeavors have always included songs that closely aligned with the actions and emotions that make us human beings. No little green men here, and Shapes of Screams internalizes even further, but on a much grander scale.

Opening with Crusades, the new listener will quickly become acquainted with dynamics that are a hallmark of the band, the formula that has brought veteran enthusiasts back for more. Its opening is quiet, but there is a leap into the energetic force, one supported by a militaristic drum cadence, and carefully enveloped by vocal layering. The first single to be released, The Bells! The Bells! allows a single sound to temporarily grip the listener then pushes right into a resounding anthem, with the expected cathedralic level of sound, and background vocals reminiscent of a bell choir. Sober Party’s title is a misnomer, a tune that will dare you not to sing along. Hostages is about what we can accomplish on our own, and adjusts the formula to have lyrics claim immediate precedence, then transition to individual solos, giving fans the chance to appreciate each member on their own merits. Guilty is a cinematic spectacle that might very well result in dancing. If there is one song that misses the mark, it’s the appropriately named Apathy. Scarlet Letter Rhymes, will bring attention right back to the overall, and younger audiences will likely connect to its lyrics. Alternately, Born to End This Way and Requiem bring us to a liminal space, and are about the things we leave behind. They contain strong elements of 80’s rock at their foundations, keeping the potentially haunting lyrics from weighing down the listener. Doooooooooomaggedon helps break out of the sentiment, and gives us drums to the Nth degree throughout, then storming into a shock of guitar. Finally, Breathing In The Future Exhaling The Past draws things to a close with choral explosion, letting Battelle’s main vocals overlap, without wiping out this gospel quality.

Overall, Shapes of Screams is an album that will win over new fans to the band, without costing it the existing fans that have come to love the richness of sound. There are few bands right now that can grab the essence of rock and sustain it, but LostAlone have accomplished this.