Genre: Black Metal/Post-Rock (Blackgaze)
Album: .neon (2010)
1. Minusmensch (7:49)
2. These Nights Were Ours (4:41)
3. Pulse/Surreal (8:21)
4. Neige de Mars (5:01)
5. Coma (6:07)
6. .neon (7:42)
When you hear the world 'black metal', you assume corpse paint, satanic imagery, screeches, and disturbing lyrics.But for Lantlos,it's a different story, especially with drummer Herbst (Markus Siegenhort) and new lead singer Neige (StÚphane Paut), who instead combine the dark genre with the concept of shoegaze, the post-rock sub genre.
Lantl˘s can be the considered one of Neige's 'shoegaze' projects, combining bleak imagery of cityscapes with a sound accompanying it, while contrasting his other project, Alcest. Formed in 2005 by Herbst and ex lead singer Angrrau, the band's concept was like Neige's other project, Amesoeurs: Combining black metal with shoegaze to give the feeling of dark cities and the feeling of despair.But following the self titled release, Angrrau left the band, leaving Herbst to look for several other musicians to be his next singer. Thankfully,he found Neige, who at the time, was already dealing with the break-up of Amesoeurs back in 2009.And thus, the creation of '.neon' began.
A word to describe .neon is 'Captivating', as each song pulls you into the melodies and feel of the modern world, giving you the feel of how the urban life can be dark and can isolate the ones who still can't understand it, with the help of Neige's vocals and Herbst's lyrics. The beginning of the album, 'Minusmensch' leads you in with the feel of a beautiful slow intro up into the two minute mark, where Negie's famed screaming comes in. What is amazing about Negie's screams is that while unsettling, can give you a sense of relation to the lyrical themes. As stated before, Lantl˘s's theme is the concept of the modern world, and the lyrics show, giving the imagery of being lost in the world of urban life, and how one can't escape it.
'These Nights Were Ours' gives a break of the dark feels and gives into the concept of sorrow and loss, while combining the band concept with the feel of loneliness. Nothing can really be said because...there's nothing too say because it is THAT good, causing the listener to imagine yourself driving on a road at night,just looking at the city lights.
'Pulse/Surreal' is a unique track, as Neige combines both his screeches and his clean vocals, giving both a feel of rage and hope in the song. The lyrics takes you into a beautiful journey of being homeless (as the band's name implies) and how in life, if you don't buckle down and get your act together,this is your future. As Herbst's lyrics states:
This is the world.
'Neige de Mars', which roughly translates to 'Snow in March', is a very weak song. It's not a horrible song, in no way, but it just feels like it could be better. The song's French lyrics (roughly translated) tells of another loss in love, and how could have been at the cause of it: You, or her? A good message, but not really executed correctly.
'Coma' can be assumed to be the collapse of one's life through drugs, as implied by Herbst's lyric:
On the toilet floor I lie.
Reduced to filth and stench.
Home. Warmth. Life.
A very heavy but some-what mellow track, but again, like 'Neige de Mars', weak. Not a bad song, but not executed correctly. The song can be related to not just the idea of drugs, but to the idea of wanting to escape life, and finding anything to escape it, whether through games, music, ect., hence the idea of a 'conscious coma'.
The last track '.neon', is one of the best highlights to an album, and a perfect ending to it as well. The song can be assumed to be an instrumental, but with audible female spoken words in the background in German. To roughly translate it, the spoken word talks about the feeling of hope, similar to 'Pulse/Surreal', of finding someone who can understand the feeling of loneliness and departure of said person. It's a song that can be interpret by who ever listens to the track, and as stated before: a perfect ending to an album.
To finish off this review, '.neon' is brilliant and captivating and is one of those albums I can listen to over and over again. If you want to listen to a band that can pull you into the feelings of urban life with the feel of emotions and relation, this album is for you.
It may not be for anyone though, but then again, some can open themselves to this type of music.