As Lions - Selfish Age
Let's get this out of the way before we start, this is not Rise To Remain 2.0 and, yes lead singer of As Lions has rock royalty in his blood, being the son of Iron Maiden's vocalist Bruce Dickinson.
Now that's out of the way, As Lions are a relatively young band having formed at the start of 2015. Those five musicians—Austin Dickinson, guitarist and keyboardist Conor O’Keefe, guitarist Will Homer, bassist Stefan Whiting and drummer Dave Fee started playing sold out shows across the UK to build up a fanbase before unleashing Aftermath an EP released in 2016 serving as a taster for this album.
Opening track 'Aftermath', lifted from the EP, is a statement of intent. Austin intoning "What have we created / What have we become?" while the rest of the band pound and growl behind his soaring vocals. It's one of the bigger sounding songs across the record and should be, being an opening track. While the lyrics are worryingly prescient in this hotbed of political upheaval across the world.
It's important in rock to have a great hook and groove to distinguish yourself. This is shown in stand out track 'Bury My Dead'; with a chorus to match any recent pop song, Dickinson wails away with the simple lines "Bury My Dead, Bury My Dead, Bury My Dead". The rest of the band are locked in tight complimenting each other accordingly. Quality does dip slightly at times, 'Deathless' is doom laden riffing and feels plodding against the rest of the record, the lyrics talking about the Internet craze of instant recognition.
Having recently played festivals such as Download and touring with metal legends Five Finger Death Punch this is a good start for the young band. Not yet quite a complete package- though who is on their debut - but there are signs here of things to come. The rock world is for As Lions to take, as long as they take this opportunity to dominate a packed genre, let's watch them roar.