LOVEBITES – Judgement Day
March 22, 2023, 3 months ago
The big comeback successfully lives up to the hype. Japan power metal elite Lovebites took a brief hiatus after 2020’s Electric Pentagram to focus on their personal lives and the layoff certainly hasn’t hurt their effortless speed musicianship. New bassist Fami has also entered the fold and is given time to show off her skills.
Clocking in at 10 tracks and 53 minutes, the shorter runtime compared to its predecessor helps tremendously letting the tracks breathe more as Electric Pentagram felt like a sprinting marathon. Guitar duo Miyako and Midori lead the way with speedy riffs, duo melodic, and wailing soloing and Asami shines on the vocal front tackling the songs with immediate charisma and nailing mirror shattering notes. Haruna amazes behind the kit with impressive stamina and creative nuances in her rhythms.
Opener “We Are The Resurrection” sets the tone with bold and blazing speed – this is exactly the kind of stuff that earned them attention – outstanding musicianship, soaring vocals, and potent melodies on a race track out to rip your head off. Just check out the insanely paced, pure thrash metal of “Dissonance” or the musical gymnastics of closer “Soldier Stands Solitarily”. “The Spirit Lives On” is like a lost, classic Edguy track – could totally see a young Tobias Sammet tackling this and putting in on Mandrake. The highlight is the video that dropped right before the album; “Stand And Deliver (Shoot ‘Em Down)” is anthemic speedster with gang vocals, chanting lyrics ripe for the live crowd. The elegance in tempo and creating intricate leads, rhythms, and riffs is why Lovebites sets out amongst the rest.
For a different flavor, “My Orion” takes on a ‘80s rock vibe and the chorus is ridiculously catchy; like a lost Gary Moore tune. “Lost In The Garden” holds creative back-and-forth soloing with a neo-classical vibe while “Wicked Witch” gallops with an Iron Maiden-inspiration. Also, check out the unexpected electric keyboard break in that one.
Welcome back ladies!