After a period of no new music for almost three years, Lorna Shore has finally released their third album, “Immortal,” and while it is a bit of a rough comeback for the group, it’s worth the wait for longtime fans.
“Immortal” has the band going for a more melodic sound, adding a dark and somber atmosphere that can be heard in the title track at the beginning of the album. It opens with a choir chanting, along with organ and piano in the background, adding to the mood of darkness. That all is a slow somber build to the end, which “Hollow Sentence,” being a personal favorite of mine, has more of, almost like the band was going a bit of a symphonic black metal route.
The entirety of the album brings the rapid drumbeats of Austin Archey, which sounds like a machine gun going off in the bass drum. Blast beats are a necessity in deathcore and Archey is a master at it. Included is the teamwork of Adam De Micco and Andrew O’Connor shredding on both the guitars and bass in the album. Adam’s solos are nothing to sneeze at either, which are very rapid and harmonic, especially the hook in the title track during the chorus.
CJ McCreery taking up the vocals in this album is bittersweet with the allegations against him still on the rise, but it’s obvious why Lorna Shore fans were happy he joined the band back in 2018. His guttural low growls are soul-shaking at best and fits the structure of “Immortal.” Not to mention his demonic-like screams that made him popular in his Signs of the Swarm days, including the switching between the two sides that really got me in the breakdown near the end of “Death Portrait,” sounding like something out of a sci-fi horror film.
The album had a lot of singles prior to release, with the title track “Immortal,” “Death Portrait,” “This is Hell” and “Darkest Spawn,” probably to keep the fans happy as their long-awaited album took a bit to be released, but each gave their part in showing fans what to expect from their boys in Lorna Shore.
“Death Portrait” kept up to speed with its own brutality with the killer breakdowns that Lorna Shore does so well. “This is Hell” and “Darkest Spawn” didn’t disappoint either with orchestration that compares to technical death metal bands like Suffocation and Spawn of Possession.
If I were to pick my favorite track in the entire album, it would either be the title track or “Hollow Sentence.” "Immortal" was the best pick to put at the very beginning of the album with its quiet somber tone that warms up the listener. As for “Hollow Sentence,” it had more use of orchestral instruments that added a bit more to the song structure. Piano and organs are hard to use in metal, in my opinion, unless they are used right. Whoever composed those parts of not only “Hollow Sentence,” but the entire album, deserves applause. As for my least favorite, I would pick “Relentless Torment.” It’s a good song, but it doesn’t really stand out as much with the rest of the album ahead of it. It is the last song of the album, which I felt was a good choice as there was a whole lot of brutality in the entire album and “Relentless Torment” was a good song to ease things down with.
Overall, "Immortal" is one heck of an album to listen to. The composition is great, the brutality is there and has an overall vibe that fits the band itself. All the members who recorded the album did very well in recording this album, which is sad considering the circumstances with McCreery and the abuse allegations following him.
It was in Lorna Shore’s best interest to let McCreery go considering the terrible things he has done, but listening to "Immortal" gives listeners a look at what could have happened for the band in their future if everything involving the scandal didn’t exist.