Lords of Ruin….hhhmmmm, sounds rather ominous to me! The title of the EP album is Life Is A War. One of the photos on the website homepage depicts a guy wearing a gas mask against a desolate, foggy background among the three photo rotation, all similarly themed. Although the words “Hardcore Rock & Roll”, along with “Southern California” and “Lords of Ruin” all scroll across the bottom of the photos I was hesitant to try out this independently released offering sent to me digitally. Oh well, it really can’t be that bad compared to some of the things that I’ve subjected my ears to over the years and it is only five songs after all.
Well, what a pleasant surprise that was! Proving that you should never judge a book by it’s cover, I was instantly hooked from track one and stopped everything else while I listened to the Life Is A War EP! The quintet that makes up this Orange County California born band features Lauren Boquette on vocals, guitarists Jimmy Craig and Travis Dunn, bassist Chico Tovar and drummer Lagarto “Paco” Marley. Tover and Marley replace original members Eric Dilday and Corey Bush, who appear on the Life Is A War EP. Upon further research a statement on the Lords of Ruin website reads: “A band with one simple mission, to bring back honest, powerful & heavy hard hitting rock & roll. For many years now, metal has taken a turn into a mega-fast, double bass, growling, cookie monster vocal type of a thing. Those elements are nowhere to be found here with Lords of Ruin. This is big riffs, big choruses, head banging rhythms and words you not only hear, but feel.” I couldn’t agree more and couldn’t have said it better! The band formed in 2010 and they released their first full length, the self titled Lords of Ruin in 2010, the Beehive EP in 2011 and the Ghost of Finneran single in 2013.
This newest serving leads off with “New Life” and busts out fighting immediately with a pounding drum beat while a powering riff drives the song forward. Vocalist Lauren Boquette had this to say regarding track two, the lead single “Welcome to the Last Time”: “I’ve learned first-hand that misery loves company but being that company is draining and a waste of energy. You just can’t allow self-destructive, miserable people into your life, they will attempt to destroy your soul.”, a message that has rung true throughout this reviewers life as well. The middle point of the collection is held down by the shortest track here with “Wrong On The Inside”. Track four, “This is Her Life (Wasted)” may well be my favourite of the five-song collection with it’s catchy vocal and music hooks. The EP closes with the title track “Life Is A War”, a fitting end to this high energy full throttle Extended Play, leaving you hungry for more……now to search out the aforementioned releases.
Life Is A War is available on November 15th, 2013, distributed via Sullen Clothing’s new independent label Sullen Musik. Sullen Clothing is an art driven apparel brand based in Huntington Beach California and the adjoining label is focused on incubating and launching up and coming new talent. The EP is also available now on the I-tunes platform along with the other work from Lords of Ruin and all five Life Is A War songs can be heard via the Lords of Ruin you-tube channel.