Welsh rockers Lostprophets return with new album Weapons and a 14 date UK and Ireland tour; their first headline tour in two years. Weapons is their fifth album and follows the success of 2010’s Betrayed and a year of highs for the lads from Wales.
A welcome return for fans and a still in good form for a band who have risen to fame from the club circuit, to festivals to headline tours.
The aggressive sound is still apparent, driving guitars, heavy drums and hard vocals; a sound that snaps you to attention and places them between nu-metal and hard rock.
Weapons is vintage Lostprophets, the lyrics still portray an element of cynicism but show an honesty in Watkins’ writing and would ‘speak’ to a generation of youth discovering themselves and their place.
Bring ‘em Down is the first single and first track on the album. Punchy and forceful, starting with a guitar riff that remains constant throughout, the drums articulate the beat and Watkins vocal style remains unchanged from previous albums, a big voice sticking with the range he’s not only comfortable with but which suits the sound they’re creating. The bridge provides the perfect opportunity for the band to let loose, all instruments blazing showcasing the ability of each member.
Heart on Loan is ballady; recurring riffs and a catchy chorus with harmonies darting in and out. A song that speaks about letting people in and the harsh reality that everyone needs someone to lean on sometimes. It has a dominant sound and is really one of the more memorable songs on the album.
Another Shot and Better off Dead – the latter sounding very Linkin Park – hark into the territory of what some would call emo, but this is still Lostprophets, their instrumentation and melodies still have lift in spite of some of the more sombre lyrics and dark themes.
What’s nice about this album however, is that those darker songs are broken up through the use of more elated rhythms on other tracks like Jesus Walks and A Little Reminder That I’ll Never Forget.
Lostprophets continue to be accessible, Weapons highlights this. They’re not a band to grow tired listening to, although there are some songs that are more forgettable than others. If you’re a fan you’ll be happy that they’re not playing with their style in an attempt ‘discover new depths’ they’re doing what they’ve always done.
*Lostprophets are playing at Nottingham’s amazing gig venue, Rock City, in April where I’ll be there to review. Check back here for my thoughts on that gig!*
Fran Bonner – March 2012