Friday 26 February 2021



Lords of the Opium Church are relatively new band, having only been together since 2019, but you would be hard pushed to believe that given the tightness of the performances showcased on the bands self titled debut "Lords of the Opium Church". Jordo LeMoine (guitar/vocals); Rob Lawless (drums) and Terry Paholek (bass/vocals) may have only been together for a short period but boy can these guys kick out a groove!

The grooves these guys kick out are not exactly what you might expect from an album portraying a very doomic image on its cover or for that matter from a band with a name that conjures up images of strung out musicians with a haunted looks in their eyes. What you get instead is a mix of old school classic rock swing, stoner rock fuzz and proto-metal bluster all edged with occasional elements of Motorhead-like swagger. Vocals throughout the albums eight tracks are of a very high standard, clean powerful, melodious and possessing a clarity that is rare in these days of screamers and growlers. Along with the usual bass, guitar and drums, all of which are played with a dexterity and tightness that belies the brevity of their tenure together as a unit, you will also find scattered around this collection of songs some very cool sounding, but uncredited, keyboard flourishes and string arrangements all of which add an extra element of class to the proceeding and give songs like "Opium Church", "Thunderhead" and the delightfully swinging "Banshee" a fuller, richer dynamic that is heavy yet at the same time accessible. Among the most pleasing aspects of "Lords of the Opium Church" is that accessibility, the bands grooves gritty enough to appeal to the underground crowd and its melodies and classic rock leanings ensuring a listen from those who might have more mainstream tastes. all of  which adds up to a win/win situation for both band and listeners.

Canada is a huge country with a diverse geography so it does not come as a surprise that bands from that country might reflect that diversity in their music, we've already seen Canadian bands like Monster Truck, Dopethrone and Sons of Otis make their presences felt on the international scene and Desert Psychlist can see no reason why Lords of the Opium Church cannot follow in their footsteps, they've got the chops, they've got the melodies and they've got the grooves. 
Check 'em out ....

© 2021 Frazer Jones

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