LABEL: ARISING EMPIRE
WORDS: KEVIN FLINN
French metalcore band, Landmvrks, have had an eventful year. At the end of 2017, founding member Thomas Lebreton left the band while the remaining four bandmates signed to Arising Empire at the beginning of 2018. Shortly after signing, a new single and music video were released ahead of their recently released second studio album, ‘Fantasy’. Consisting of eleven songs, ‘Fantasy’ is a heavy, head banging endeavor with a few tracks that stand out amongst a listing of solid entries into this sophomore venture. With a more polished and fine-tuned sound, fans of metalcore, ezcore, and every other core there is will find something to love here.
The lead single ‘Scars’ is definitely one of the standouts in this collection. With a pop-punk like opening guitar riff, the song soons drop you into a fun riff that begs you to bob your head. A mix of an airy, reserved motif against a faster, heavier section balances out the verses which perfectly show off how well the band are able to do both styles of this metalcore spectrum. The chorus resembles more of the first half of the verse, with the more airy and reserved approach, but allowing it to grow and fill out more than the verse could. There’s a reason this song was chosen to be the single; it easily fits in this album, but stands out enough to bring something unique to the rest of the collection.
“With a more polished and fine-tuned sound, fans of metalcore, ezcore, and every other core there is will find something to love here.”
There’s a trend with most of these songs that can be seen in ‘Scars’. A balance of heavy and light, and fast and slow dominate the tracks, often with vocalist Florent Salfati balancing his more aggressive scream/singing against less heavy instrumentation. That’s not to say the album doesn’t have its share of full out breakdowns, with songs like ‘Reckoning’ and ‘Disdain’ bringing out the pig-squealing vocals in all of its glory.
Two songs stand out amongst the heavy guitar riffs and pounding drum tracks. ‘Kurhah’, a full instrumental, acts as an experiment for the band. A rather brief track compared to the rest of the songs, ‘Kurhah’ is a hauntingly beautiful piece that acts as brief respite until immediately throwing us back into the fray with the final track, the previously mentioned ‘Disdain’. ‘Alive’ is the other slower piece, acting as a ballad for the record and bringing on vocalist Camille Contreras for a beautiful duet. Salfati shows off his vocal ability here as well, holding back from the higher range scream/singing for a lower registered clean vocal track. This sound is a departure from the other songs, and is a great addition to the listing, allowing Landmvrks to appeal to a larger audience looking for a more radio friendly sound or single.
“Landmvrks wear their inspiration on their sleeves and build a compilation that weighs multiple styles and sounds.“
‘Fantasy’ is a great follow up to the band’s first album, ‘Hollow’. With a more polished and refined sound, no doubt attributed to the added help of Arising Empire, Landmvrks have created a collection of solid tracks that play around within the metalcore genre. With the different motifs used in each tune, balancing their heavier more common sound with the lighter, less angsty moments, there’s a solid foundation built from a mixture of genres that the band takes inspiration from. Ranging from pop-punk and alternative rock, to the more obvious metalcore, Landmvrks wear their inspiration on their sleeves and build a compilation that weighs multiple styles and sounds. This album will no doubt be a landmark in the bands career. Heh.
Landmvrks new album ‘Fantasy’ is out now via Arising Empire Records. They’ll be supporting While She Sleeps in February/March for 4 UK shows.