Lucifer – III
Century Media Records
Running Time: 39:27
Review by ‘Dark Juan’
Good afternoon from the plague-ridden shores of the United Kingdom, where I continue to rant at you all with varying degrees of severity from my secret and heavily armoured eyrie. It is I, Dark Juan, Hellpriest to toffs and gentry, defiler of virgins and Jacob Rees-Mogg’s sister Annunziata and wrangler of useless hellhounds. All of which are currently upstairs guarding Mrs. Dark Juan from imagined intruders. At least, that’s supposed to be their remit but they are all snoring so I can only assume I will once more have to rely on the trusty Gunn And Moore cricket bat by my bed again if chez Dark Juan is invaded by miscreants… Update: Mrs. Dark Juan is fucked off with them all and has foisted the bastards on me. Currently the squishy faced morons are cleaning each other with a frankly disturbing thoroughness and Air Chief Marshal Sir Zeusington Zeus KCVG, VC, MM, DFC and Bar has taken all the available bed space and left me creasing my Second Invocation Robes (Morning Weight) in a most uncomfortable position crushed against the headboard.
This review is being brought to you on the back of a five-hour writing jag that happened last night and it appears there are still words that need to come out. I have drunk a small loch’s worth of tea because I have pickled my own liver during this social distancing malarkey and it’s time the poor, grossly abused organ had a rest. Anyway, this time I’m going to attempt to be vaguely professional and tell you all about the Scandinavian groovemeisters Lucifer’s third album, intelligently entitled “III”. I admire people who don’t mince their words. Ironic really, considering how much bollocks I spout. I also have to be somewhat more professional than usual because Century Media have actually asked for this one… Oh, fuck it!
Opener “Ghosts” reminds us straight away of the bluesy propensities of Lucifer, with a riff of awesome simplicity, magnificence and splendour. A simple affair of just a few notes, it breathes, and Lucifer lives. The smoky, sultry vocal of Johanna Sadonis kicks in and we are all transported back to the 70’s and Patti Smith records and sitting there smoking perfumed hash and listening to Free songs on a turntable in your bedroom. It’s very very good indeed. In fact, the whole album is a step forward from “II”, released in 2018 and reviewed by yours truly for another well known heavy metal record reviewing website. Johanna’s voice doesn’t sound as strained as it did on the previous release and the production on “III” is a much earthier affair than the previous offering and makes the record all the better for it. This style of organ tinged, fuzzed out 70’s inspired hard rock should not have a crystal-clear production. It should be bass heavy and slightly muddy, but with punchy drums and cymbals clearly heard. Lucifer have delivered this in spades.
There are many influences at work in the music of Lucifer – Fleetwood Mac, Bad Company, Patti Smith, Sabbath, Sir Lord Baltimore and Hawkwind are just a few I can hear. I am privately convinced this is the way Wolfmother see themselves in their heads. It is fucking cool, man. The grooveometer is off the scale, gentlemen and hotties. There is so much groovy going on here that Lucifer have formed their own groove continuum and are shaping their own groove reality. We are talking quantum groove here. A groove event horizon where all music goes to be turned into grooveonium. They are that groovy they are forming new elements. There is not a weak song on this entire record. To say I’m excited would be like saying that Hodgson Fartpants smells like a charnel house in the middle of a sewage treatment works. The sex wee quotient is reaching new and dangerous levels. Calderdale has only just got over the last episode of flooding, but it is in danger again… All pants destroyed. Send help.
This is rock and roll as it should be played. Bluesy, stonerish and doomy, dripping with melody, vocal harmonies and glorious riffs and solos combined with a singer who suits the style of the music to perfection. This is the sound of a band on top form – confident enough to have small pieces of silence in the music to allow the riff, or a sublime bass lick to fill it and carry you off into an ocean of musical nirvana. I love the time changes; I love the hint of maraca in ‘Midnight Phantom’. I love the riff on the verse of ‘Leather Demon’ reminding me of Python Lee Jackson’s ‘In A Broken Dream’. I love the bluesy singing style of Johanna Sadonis and how she interacts with the guitar and the backing vocals. I love the riffs, which can change from gentle and caressing to clearly having anger management issues and bouncing you off the far wall. Fuzzed out bliss awaits you all, dear acolytes. ‘Pacific Blues’ even has a slight suggestion of Iron Maiden (‘Flight Of Icarus’ melody? Anyone? Or is it just me?) in the phrasing of the verse.
Although I am slightly confused and more than a little worried about the fate of the sheep that appeared to have wandered into the studio at the start of the song entitled “Lucifer”, which incidentally has one of the most heartbreakingly wonderful bass guitar runs I have ever heard.
So, to officially confirm, I happen to be a massive Lucifer fanboy now. This record is fucking wonderful. Even the record cover art appeals to me because it reminds me of The Avengers (the original one with Emma Peel and John Steed, not costumed morons!) and Jason King and a formative time of Dark Juan’s life when all this music was new to me…
In conclusion – If you don’t buy this you’re clearly a twat. If you like the classic stylings of Ghost, Blue Oyster Cult and Sabbath and the like you’ll fucking love Lucifer III. If you’re a fan of more extreme music, you might still get something out of the slower, doomier passages. A fucking great rock and roll record and a modern classic.
Needs more cowbell, though.
The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System is currently hyperventilating with joy because Lucifer have earned 10/10 for a fucking killer record. Can’t breathe… pass me some drugs. I don’t care which ones.
01. Ghosts (4:05)
02. Midnight Phantom (4:13)
03. Leather Demon (4:52)
04. Lucifer (3:56)
05. Pacific Blues (4:07)
06. Coffin Fever (4:12)
07. Flanked By Snakes (3:34)
08. Stay Astray (4:39)
09. Cemetery Eyes (5:49)
Lucifer (you bunch of magnificent bastards!) are:
Johanna Sadonis – vocals
Nicke Andersson – drums
Martin Nordin – guitar
Linus Björklund – guitar
Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Dark Juan and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.