March 4, 2020

The infernal boys are back! On April 3rd, Lucifer Star Machine will release their fourth album, “The Devil’s Breath”. A straight-shooting record filled with thirteen tracks guaranteed to turn every listener into a fully energised pogoer again! 

“The Devil’s Breath”, is a 42-minute long road to hell that lures the listener with huge choruses, infernal riffs and monstrous melodies presented with the band’s trademarked straightforward no-bullshit attitude, perfectly captured in the album cover artwork by Łukasz Jaszak. The Polish artist has added a vintage horror magazine look which compliments the music nicely!

The 5-piece was founded in London, UK in 2002 and has since toured several times across Europe, leaving their trail like a serpent in twelve countries, sharing stages with acts like Peter Pan Speedrock, Nashville Pussy and Demented Are Go, to name but a few. Their first single, “Death Baby”, came out in 2004 and was produced by Punk legend Rat Scabies of The Damned. In 2012 founder and band leader Tor Abyss moved back to his home country of Germany, whilst the rest of the band remained in England. Over time the logistics proved to be too difficult, so he decided to give the band a fresh start.Thus, since Autumn 2014, Lucifer Star Machine is now based in Hamburg, featuring an all-German cast, of guys who share Tor’s ass-kicking full-throttle take on music and life.

After two album releases on Indie labels, the band signed with German label I Sold My Soul Media in 2013, who released their critically acclaimed third full length album “Rock’n’Roll Martyrs”. The record was lauded for its authenticity and its snotty and unadorned approach. Since their reformation the group has released 2 singles and an EP, which were accompanied by three videos. In 2019 the band hit the stage at Wacken Open Air, one of the world‘s biggest Heavy Metal Festivals, where the bill included Slayer, Body Count and Airbourne amongst others. The band has now signed a record deal with Swedish label The Sign Records, who will release the group‘s fourth album ”The Devil‘s Breath“ worldwide on 3rd April 2020.

There is no doubt that Lucifer Star Machine have outdone themselves on their fourth full-length album. It’s a piece of prime high energy rock that also has touches of Punk, Power Pop, a touch of Metal, a hint of 50’s Rock’n’Roll and even a dash of country! (honest!). A highly entertaining package combining raw, heartfelt music with quality great musicianship and addictive hooks.

The record definitely holds a new and more accessible approach for the band, with a lot of time spent on creating strong and catchy vocal lines, musical layers, effects, and even piano parts. The record’s production is warmer and more powerful than any of the band’s previous outings with a lot of focus on the mix. Lucifer Star Machine have achieved a more dynamic and compelling guitar sound without overblown distortion, that supports and emphasises the incredible guitar work. A new era dawns for Lucifer Star Machine, it’s time to Get Lucified!

The opening track on the album is The Void (see video below). Its an unashamed punk thrash, you can still feel the influence of Rat Scabies from his producer role on previous recordings. In fact it’s quite strange that this seems to be the official video, but for me its not really representative of the more tuneful aspects of the rest of the album.

For me, second track Dwell in Misery is much better actually, lots of speed guitar, actually a decent tune with massive chorus, this is good quality Power-Pop, although I suspect the band would hate that label! Cruel Hearts is then somewhere between the two and perhaps most characteristic of the band’s general style – high energy rock’n’roll with tuneful choruses and some decent guitar licks.

Baby, When You Cry, and The Night is Young continue this high energy flow, at which point it strikes me that they’re a worthy imitation of Green Day, its good fun and infectiously addictive, even if a little one-paced (i.e. FAST!) Eat Dust is particularly giggle-inducing – think Lemmy singing Doctor Alibi on Slash’s first solo CD!

The next few songs are all equally good, somehow I’m surprised at how clean the mix is, every song has some great riffs but there’s no distortion or other other effects other than belting it out as fast as poss. The real surprise though is the album’s closer – starts off very delicate gee-tar country-style! Given that it’s the title track Devil’s Breath, I spent the whole 3 mins 15 seconds waiting for the KERRANG to hit! – my review version seemed to stop before the end, so I might never know…..

As a whole, the album is certainly very enjoyable on first listen, even if you find yourself thinking you’ve heard it before – sort of a blend of Green Day, The Damned, The Rezillos, The Mekons, and perhaps another 100 or so pub-punk bands from the London area in the mid 70’s. But no criticism, this still sounds fresh and fun! They have a well-earned reputation for high energy live shows as well, fairly hardcore but great fun at the same time – cold drinks and showers required after an hour’s pogoing 🙂 You might not see too much pogoing these days, but it still lurks in each and every one of us, only needing that jolt of electricity to spark in off! Certainly , the mix of high-energy with a sense of heartfelt and catchy melodies does make them unusual, and very endearing. – give it a whirl!
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