LA-based post-hardcore outfit letlive. caused a lot of waves with 2010’s “Fake History”. Critics were quick to compare them to Glassjaw and Refused and did so with reason. The band’s near perfect mix of controlled anger and catchy melodies was pretty much flawless. Not content to merely repeat themselves, the band upped the ante and came out of the studio with “The Blackest Beautiful”, an album that’s even tighter and bigger than its predecessor.
Frontman Jason Butler still comes across as something of a vocal contortionist, whispering, singing, rapping and screaming his way through the eleven songs. Meanwhile the rest of the band does not want to be outshined by their vocalist and mix killer riffs, and pounding drums with more atmospheric parts that bring Dredg to mind.
I won’t go as far as calling “The Blackest Beautiful” a poppy album but for a post-hardcore album that hits this hard, it’s surprisingly catchy with plenty of hooks and bouncy rhythms. Check opening track “Banshee (Ghost Fame)” that immediately sets the pace for the rest of the album or “Pheremone Cvlt”, easily one of the album’s standout tunes. It might not be the easiest album to get into, but it’s definitely worth the effort.