LATITUDES - Part Island (Album)
If you haven’t heard of LATITUDES and you are from Hertfordshire or even the rest of the country, you have probably been living under a rock. These guys have been relentlessly gigging the circuit up and down our country for years, and it shows. Their live performances are polished, tight and engaging.
The latest offering: ‘Part Island’ is testament to their relentless work ethic. The first track: ‘Underline’ starts off with acoustic guitars, it sounds unapologetically folky and if you didn’t know the band you may even be lulled into a sense of blissful false security, especially when the keys come into play. That security it’s short lived if you were hoping for something soft to take a bath to, discordant keys mark the beginning of a journey into something much more brooding, almost immediately you are dragged face first into a maelstrom of guitars and swirling bass. The vocals are ethereal and hold your hand through the darkness but get ready for a journey into the void.
‘Mooreland is the Sea’ and ‘Dovestone’ are almost one song separated by only the gap of silence between them, like two islands separated by a spit of water. If ‘Moorland is the Sea’ is looking out to a dark wind swept ocean, then ‘Dovestone’ is like being washed away with the currents. Both songs have a vibe of the vastness of the ocean; sprawling, mysterious and untamed, the latter more aggressive, like being attacked by a kraken.
‘The Great Past’ is a swirling vortex, splashy drums and soft vocals are your only life raft in this sea of guitar and bass onslaught. At times you are lulled back to safety only to be thrust back into the vortex, but, strangely, you are ok to be swept into the current.
‘Past Islands’ keeps up with the quite nautical sound throughout the album with very soft, almost flowing river sounding guitars which build into a crescendo like a wave of sound. These guys are masters of dynamics, switching seamlessly between soft and aggressive.
The whole album was a treat to listen to from start to finish. There where waves of euphoria mixed with despair. The album is like water, it flows, it’s untamed, mysterious and dark. Which is interesting from a band from Herts, which is famously doubly landlocked.
The band effortlessly mix folk, prog and even black metal elements like alchemist pioneers. If you are a fan of: Opeth, Russian Circles and Bossk you are probably going to have a wet dream.