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Northlane dropped a bomb with the surprise release of their fourth full-length album, Mesmer, on March 24th. This album is chock-full of ambient sounds, cavernous bass lines and robust instrumentation. The Australian metalcore band has constructed their perfect combination of heavy and clean vocals, prominent bass lines, subdued drumming, and diffused synthesizers. While the mix is unique, it still seems that each aspect of the band is highlighted in the most flattering way.
The lyrical content of ‘Mesmer’ is deep and really delves into heavier, personal issues. Northlane cites that the process of writing and recording this album brought them together more than ever before while exploring more intimate issues, mainly loss. A memorable line from Veridian, track ten on the album sings, ‘…bed of nails under the guillotine, wake me up when my heart stops beating.’ In an interview with Alternative Press, vocalist Marcus Bridge explained that, “The end result was personal growth, confidence and a version of Northlane that was better able to relate to one another.” Read more of that interview about the recording process and how ‘Mesmer’ got its name here.
Northlane worked with producer David Bendeth to create “Mesmer.” Bendeth has several prominent names under his belt – ie: Of Mice & Men and Beartooth. Track six, ‘Intuition,’ relays a bit of Of Mice & Men influence in the beginning.
This album flows nicely from track to track – they balance the heavier tracks with more prominently clean, almost alt-rock tracks in between. Sweeping guitar riffs and atmospheric bass pair well with the vocal range and intricate drum patterns underneath. Occasionally while listening, the mid-range vocals and instrumentals seem repetitive and uninteresting, but the guys quickly recover with an intriguing lyric or a labyrinth of instrumentation breaking up the mundane.
Stream the album here:
Songs to listen to: Solar, Veridian, Intuition
PopD gives this album 4 out of 5 stars