With the Midlands being well known for producing such greats as Black Sabbath and Judas Priest, it’s no surprise that there’s a continued stream of bands from the area setting out with their own take on music, and their own desire to make it in the scene. With their new record, Vol 002 – Mercy Flight, due out on Monday the 25th of November, Left For Red are the latest unit to attempt the break out, and from the sounds of it, have got the goods to back it up. Drawing influence from the likes of Strapping Young Lad, Tool and Deftones, the band have already achieved support slots with Chimaira and Revoker, as well as being awarded the Kerrang! TNA competition – demonstrating their ability to convert fans wherever they go. Based on all of this, and seeing as we were sent a copy of said EP, I figured it was about time we jumped in to check things out for ourselves!
Kicking off with “Kneel Before You Die” we’re led into a melee of drum work, building a sense of anticipation for what is to follow and crafting a sound that’s heavy, hard and in your face – and then it breaks. Packed with groove orientated riffery and drums that are sure to have you banging your head from the off, the opening moments here get things going in the best possible way, crafting a sound that deserves to be played very, VERY loud. Heavy yet packed with melody and a real sense of grooviness and funk, it’s no surprise that the band are already gaining the recognition they are, as quite simply, the opening moments here are mind-blowingly good.
Progressing on to “My Obsession,” the high level continues, this time lowering the tone ever so slightly to hammer out a track that’s proper heavy, keeping things slow to fully accentuate what’s going on. Haunting vocals seem to echo out over the sludgy and in your face backing music, crafting the heaviness to perfection and keeping us engaged throughout. Sometimes simplicity works well and makes a track all the more effective, and in this case it’s spot on, allowing the listener the opportunity to simply take everything on board, allowing the heaviness to take over whilst at the same time, challenging and pushing the boundaries of said simplicity.
Closing with “Mercy Flight,” the guys bring the EP to a close in style, once again shifting their style ever so slightly to ensure that things stay interesting and in your face. Much faster and packing one hell of a punch, this track is THE live scene track off of the EP, presenting us with a sound that’s sure to ignite pits, get people moving, and secure the chaps a spot amongst the ‘must see’ bands of 2013-14. It’s fitting that the closing moments should be some of the most hard hitting, leaving the listener happy in the knowledge that they’re just borne witness to something pretty damned awesome, and at the same time, can’t wait to see how the hell the guys follow this one up.
It’s always dangerous releasing a three track EP as quite simply, it means people only get a small insight into the sound of the band – however with Left For Red, they’ve pulled it off with aplomb. Deep and powerful throughout, this is an EP that demonstrates how able a band we’re dealing with, showcasing their style and proving that once again, the Midlands is producing some serious talent we should all be taking serious note of.