The Lidocaine - 'On the Road to Miero' (Inverse Records) Print E-mail
CD Reviews
Written by Michael Anthony   
Thursday, 09 May 2013 03:20

lidocainealbumI'm feeling very well disposed towards The Lidocaine. From the first track, 'Life is Beautiful', to the last, 'Saving Wing (Or Maybe a Devil's Thing)', 'On the Road to Miero' put a smile on my face. And you can't knock that!


Despite lyrical themes that are actually quite grim, musically this is an album full of powerful and uplifting tunes. Nestling somewhere between the grandeur of Epica and the comic book metal of early Helloween, 'On the Road to Miero' shares something of the power and passion of the very best heavy metal. Maiden fans might like to take 'To Tame a Land' or 'Wrathchild' as useful reference points.


The tracks are built on solid riffing with vocals that are grandiose in intent and theatrical in delivery. Think Rob Halford at his most compelling, and check out the near operatic melodies on 'Bring Back the Pain' and 'The Tail' (to name but two of the tracks where this is evident). If I'm being picky, it's probably fair to say that while Halford's vocals soar, the vocals of Messrs Eroz and Rausku are at times a little strained, but what they lack in range and polish they more than make up for in character.


Some of the more dramatic passages on show here border on the amusing and take us to within a step of the absurd – again like most of the best heavy metal! There's also a whiff of NWOBHM-esque rawness, which, at the end of the day, appeals to my sense of nostalgia and tradition.


'Guilty', 'Reach', and the title track, show that The Lidocaine are not all about bombast, displaying some subtlety in the songwriting and arrangements and introducing some welcome variety. They're not afraid to stretch out a little either, hinting at possible prog-metal tendencies. The album also contains an unlisted and rather politically incorrect sounding bonus track which appears to be an ode to "cocksucking." But that's the only blot on an otherwise well-ordered copy book.


Hailing from Helsinki, this is the band's second album. Their somewhat tortured biography suggests that reaching this point has been something of a struggle for them. It's to be hoped that they’ve now achieved a stable line-up, with Jari Vanhannen (drums) and Jura Sarlin (bass) joining guitar/vocals mainstays Rausku and Eroz. With the right kind of promotion, and good PR – they look as rough and tough as old boots in the album photography – there's no reason why 'On the Road to Miero' shouldn’t gain a wider audience and give the band a fighting chance.


As the press release says: "Unbelievable, Finnish, heart of darkness itching metal rock full of exciting twists in the melody and musical arrangements ripping your hair!" I couldn't have put it better myself!


To pick up your copy of 'On The Road To Miero' - CLICK HERE