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Lugnet - Nightwalker

Lugnet
Nightwalker
by Mike "Bitchin" Bourgeois at 08 February 2019, 7:52 AM

I love the music of the seventies. Bands were pushing the boundaries, experimenting with the rapidly evolving recording technologies and realizing there is more to music than just straight 4/4 time signatures and simple blues cord melodies. LUGNET seems to realize this too, and from the opening "Die For You" try and prove it. The guitar sound is straight from the seventies/early eighties, overdriven, raw and not overly processed with a thundering bass barely held in check by a manic drummer who loves to have his way with his set. The cut to half time in the solo worked flawlessly and the exit just as smooth.

"Begging" was the first real exposure to Fredrik Jansson-Punka and his amazing skill on the skins. Not to be out done, the guitar/bass combine to lay down a complex run that seems to be tailored to showcase bassist Lennart Zethzon. "Never Again" has an interesting call and answer going on between the guitarists Matti Norling and Marcus Holten during the verses. Any questions that LUGNET has been heavily influenced by "The Zep" were put to rest by "Death Laughs at You", and even though vocalist Johan Fahlberg doesn't have the range of Plant, his bluesy growl is perfectly suited for this style of music.

Bands that played heavy like this in the seventies seem to try and avoid being called heavy metal, but I think they should at least acknowledge their role in the foundation of it. "Nightwalker" and "Living in a Dream" are great examples of proto metal, too heavy to be true blues/jazz but not quite true metal in my humble opinion, but when I got to "Kill Us All" The metal was revealed. Slow but driving, it is a showcase for just how close hard rock is to true metal and only anal nitpickers like me seem to care.

Unlike another seventies influenced band who directly copied their favorite band (GRETA VAN FLEET, anyone?), LUGNET took the flavor of the seventies and put their own take of it on tape. Very well composed with intricate riffs, great transitions and soulful solos, this is a great album for whatever the occasion. My only real beef with it is the final mix seems a bit dull, not quite as bright or clear and sharp as it could have been. Overall though I enjoyed it and recommend you give it a listen.

Songwriting: 9
Originality: 7
Memorability: 8
Production: 7

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Die for You
2. Begging
3. Never Again
4. Death Laughs at You
5. Nightwalker
6. Living in a Dream
7. Cockroach
8 Kill Us All
Lineup:
Johan Fahlberg – Vocals
Matti Norling – Guitars
Marcus "Makan" Holten – Guitar
Lennart "Z" Zethzon – Bass
Fredrik Jansson-Punka – Drums
Record Label: Pride & Joy Music
     


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