Lord of the Lost: Blood & Glitter

I am brand spanking new to the world of Lord of the Lost and when I say brand new, I mean, I discovered them 5 days before their latest album, Blood and Glitter, was released.

Sometimes, Instagram’s algorithm is right. Yes, I would indeed, like Lord of the Lost.

And by like, I am now their new obsessive fan, who jumped in with both feet into their entire back catalogue while waiting for Blood and Glitter to be released.

For those who may be like me, here’s a brief history of Lord of the Lost:

Formed in mid-2007 by Chris Harms, their debut album Fears was released in 2010, followed by Antagony in 2011, Die Tomorrow (2012), From the Flame into the Fire (2014), Empyrean (2016), Thornstar (2018), and Judas (2021).

The current line up of Lord of the Lost is Chris “The Lord” Harms on vocals, guitar with Class Grenayde on bass, Gared Dirge on piano, synthesiser, π (Pi) on guitar, and Niklas Kahl on drums.

Harms has cited in interviews some pretty amazing influences like that of Rammstein, Nine Inch Nails, and the iconic Lady Gaga. Of the latter, the band has covered “Judas” on their The Heartbeat of the Devil EP (2022) and “Bad Romance” on their Beside & Beyond EP (2012) and both covers are top notch.

Photo by VD Pictures

New fans as well as long-time fans will be hard pressed to pigeonhole Lord of the Lost into a single genre as they are a wonderful cornucopia of metal, glam, industrial, and rock to name a few. While listening to their discography, I found the band’s sound to be like my iTunes catalogue, everything and anything. Nothing is off limits with their sound and that’s what I find the most unique about Lord of the Lost. In having a mix of styles and genres, they have crafted their own genre around them.

I think their Twitter bio says it best,

Lord of the Lost are a multi-talented, genrefluid band from Germany, whose music presents itself far beyond genre stereotypes.

Being the visionaries that they are, Blood and Glitter continues that genre defying trope.

Their latest album kicks off with the title track “Blood and Glitter”. As this was my introduction to the world of Lord of the Lost, what attracted me aurally were the opening vocals of Chris Harms and how he goes from a beautiful bassy speaking voice into a violent scream that melds wonderfully with the music as everything joins forces to kick the listener in the face. Chris has a natural ability to float between clean and harsh vocals with ease and I was surprised by how well the synthesizer/keys blend with the intensity of the drums, guitar, and bass. Watch the video for the song below.

I knew from the song title alone, “Leave the Hate in the Comments” was going to be epic and let me tell you it did not disappoint one bit. This track is brutally sonic and lyrically brutal. Let’s talk about the lyrics first. Whew boy, this is a very thoughtful and pointed criticism of haters and trolls who spew their diatribe of hate in the comments of anything. Lord of the Lost wonderfully calls them out for what they are, “No love, no life. No end in sight. No hope, no friends…So sad and so lonely. Your mom must be proud. You are a slave to your faceless hate. You hate what you don’t know and you cannot control…” I have a tendency to not read  comments so I am assuming the band has received their fair share of hate for their craft and creativity. Chris is vocally perfect on this track. There is an empathy for his attackers in his deep baritone voice that balances out the anger of being attacked by the faceless haters and trolls, but where I feel his vocals shine is when he unleashes his emotions during the chorus. It’s filled with his own hatred and frustrations towards the haters, but unlike his haters, he has channelled those emotions into an unbridled vocal power that is spine tingling. The music…the band channels the hate into a brutally sonic and aggressively beautiful sound. There is not one moment in this song where one can breathe. I’m not sure I would have ever said “scratching” would be brutal, but how it’s used within this song, it’s as if it’s been weaponized into hardened steel. You’re not suppose to bring a knife to gun a fight, but Lord of the Lost did and they won the fight. The guitars are heavy, the bass is thunderous, and the drumming is soul crushing. This song is sheer perfection.

After its predecessor has assaulted not only your ears and mind, “Absolute Attitude” is a welcome breath and an absolute 180 from the track before it. What I dig the most about this song is the 80’s synth vibes that are throughout the song along with one of the most infectious and steady bass lines I’ve ever heard. When the chorus kicks in is where the song gets heavier but it doesn’t make the song heavy. There’s an airiness about the song that remains even in moments of aggression. If I didn’t already love Chris’ voice, this song would solidify that love. There’s an almost operatic feel at moments but it’s the way he vocally keeps in time with the bass that is wonderful. He allows his voice to crescendo as the music does and the harsh vocals compliment the song beautifully.

As “The Future of a Past Life” featuring Marcus Bischoff of Heaven Shall Burn kicks off, the listener is tricked into thinking they’re about to enter a fight club. While not far off, the vocals betray the heavy as Chris fluctuates between clean and harsh. Marcus contributes to the harsh vocals but it’s Chris’ clean honey like timbre that softens the intensity of the song. 

Niklas’ drumming is soul bashing and Class matches each intense hit with his bass, but I found myself being pulled towards Gared’s magical keys. They sit just underneath like a rip current, ready to pull everything and everyone into its orbit.

I feel “No Respect for Disrespect” could be the salty sister song to “Leave the Hate in the Comments”. The chorus gives me Iron Maiden vibes, but it’s Pi’s guitar and Gared’s keys and their tête-à-tête with Niklas and Class that makes this song upbeat and a helluva a bop. 

When “Reset the Preset” featuring Andy Laplegua of Combichrist, Panzer AG, and Icon of Coil started, I have to admit, I immediately started humming “Two of Hearts” by Stacey Q and was transported back to the 80’s. I’m not mad about it one bit. The song could have been an epic song in the 80’s and all the while the song easily fits within modern sound as well. The band beautifully deceives the listener with a pop-sonic beat while also being heavy. Gared’s playing throughout the song is infectious and I absolutely adore the bass in this track.

The opening guitar riff for “Destruction Manual” is absolutely head banging. It is insanely catchy and when the rest of the band joins in and this song turns into a mother f’n anthem. This will surely be a fan favourite live. Just like the guitars, the lyrics are just as catchy and live up to the title of being a destruction manual. I love everything about this song especially that for  3 minutes and 56 seconds I am given the gift of soul crushing rock-n-roll.

My favourite thing about “Dead End” is Chris’ voice. This song showcases his amazing vocal range and the intensity it carries in various pitches. I am astounded by his ability to go from a low note to a high note in one seamless breath. What makes this song so damn seductive and sexy is the way Chris’ voice dances with Class’ bold and thunderous bass. The song also has a magnificent “Carmina Burana” feel with the keys and chorus. From start to finish, there is nothing wrong with this song.

Hello 80’s, I’m in love with “Leaving The Planet Earth” and the 80’s vibes the album has been bringing. While sounding nothing like “Planet Earth” by Duran Duran, a small part of me can’t help but wonder if the band was inspired by them for this song and a bit of me feels that if Major Tom came back to earth, these would be his final words to us as he left again. This song shows off the “softer” side of Lord of the Lost on this album. There’s no face melting wall of sound, just angelic choruses, drum and bass that make this heart happy as a clam in sand, and an 80’s neon romantic feel that I love.

As “Forever Lost” opens, I am torn between two thoughts. One, this track could be Vecna’s theme song in the last season of Stranger Things and two, this song could be a B-side to any song from their last album, Judas. There’s a moment in the song where Chris’ baritone voice reminds me of Glenn Danzig and it brings a chill across my skin. I commend the member who said “another abyss” needs to be in this track because goddamn it’s great. It stands out within the song and it could have easily been one of those things that was overkill, but it’s haunting. It shows the band put thought into it and didn’t add something because it sounds cool. Like “Leave the Hate in the Comments”, Chris’ vocals are perfect here and the rest of the band matches that perfection.

Be still my beating heart, there’s a saxophone in “Save Our Souls” featuring Ally Storch of Subway to Sally and that is the number one reason you need to listen to this song. The saxophone overrides any and all thoughts I have on this song. Yes, it’s a great song, but y’all, there’s a SAXOPHONE and that’s all that you really need to be aware of.

The penultimate “One Last Song” is an absolute banger. The pain and hope within Chris’ voice is equally matched by each member of the band. The entire song is bold, beautiful, full of pain, and full of hope.

When “The Look” featuring German songstress Blümchen started, I screamed at my speakers. I am a cover fan and by god, Lord of the Lost fucking nailed this cover of Roxette’s hit perfectly. They were able to take this classic hit, upgrade it, and then put their unique sound over it and it is one of the best covers I have heard in a long while. Perfect. Perfect. Perfect.

FAVOURITE TRACKS: “Leave the Hate in the Comments”, “Forever Lost”, and “Destruction Manual”

MUST LISTEN TRACKS: “Forever Lost”, “Leave the Hate in the Comments”, “One Last Song” and “Dead End”

Final thoughts on Blood and Glitter…I feel that Judas was an internally reflective album but with Blood and Glitter, Lord of the Lost looked outward, acknowledged the harshness of others, kicked them in the balls, and decided to say let’s have a fucking ball with this album. 

And while I know this album was released 2 days before the end of 2022, I am moving it into the top albums of 2023. It’s too good for me to give it to 2022.

Listen to Blood and Glitter on Spotify

Added 14-May – ALBUM REVIEW: Blood & Glitter Deluxe Edition by Lord of the Lost