If you’re familiar with Impavida and Alcest then you’ll have heard Lantlos mentioned somewhere – it’s the lovechild of Herbst and Neige, this time joined by session drummer Felix Wylezik for third album ‘Agape’. It’s also an act recognisable for playing a modest part in the contemporary surge of post-black metal, right? Well, not any more.
Lantlos distance themselves from their former sound to the extent that we can only call this more of an experiment with less confines. It’s doomy, slightly blackened and even jazzy at times – making this an entirely changed musical concept for fans to digest.
‘Intrauterin’ opens the album in somewhat surprising manner – chock with a hazed distortion of noisy guitar and filtered through a slugged doom tempo. It soon slips into a soothing pool of dreamy post-rock with Neige’s shivering, timid vocals coming to the fore to create a graceful, sonic aurora. We’re even treated to some subtle jazz drumming and isolated piano in follow-up ‘Bliss’, although it’s soon cut to a halt with some fresh blastbeating to finish the song. It reveals that the duo still pay some respect to the Lantlos of old despite Wylezik’s new percussive influences. ‘Eribo – I Collect The Stars’ is the angelic, shoegazey finisher that tops off an album that is more post-rock than post-BM.
It underpins a significant difference in Lantos, but whether it marks a new direction is unanswerable. After all, this is two artists with a clear passion for music – their journeys cultivating the depths of the soul could take them anywhere. We now know for the future – expect the unexpected.