Lord’s New Record Is A Covers Compilation That Is Actually Worth Hearing

Courtesy: Dominus Records

Independent rock band Lord released its latest record this week.  Its new covers compilation, Undercovers Vol. 1 released Friday through Dominus Records.  The 23-song (yes, 23 songs) comes less than a year after the trio released its then latest EP, Chaos Raining, and approximately two years after the release of its then latest new album, Fallen Idols.  This latest compilation stands out from so many other compilations already released this year in part because of its featured songs.  This will be discussed shortly.  The band’s take on the songs makes for its own share of interest and will be discussed a little later.  The songs’ sequencing puts the finishing touch to the record’s presentation.  When this element is considered along with the other noted items, the record in whole proves that while it is largely a space filler between albums, is still a positive addition to Lord’s catalog.

Lord’s new covers compilation, Undercovers Vol. 1 is a positive new presentation from the longtime independent hard rock band.  The record’s appeal comes in large part through its songs.  The songs are important to note in that they are not just a bunch of songs that the band recorded specially for this compilation.  Rather, they are mostly covers that the band has recorded throughout its life and has only now made available together.  Simply put, they were brought together as a way to entertain the band’s fans in lieu of a live recording and even new live dates while promoters and venue heads decide their next steps for live music.  They are not just some random space-filler used to appease contractual obligations.

Bassist Andy Dowling explained the songs’ collection during a recent interview.

“Covers have been a big love of ours since the early days of Dungeon right up to and including now,” said Dowling. “Over the years in Lord these tracks have ended up on limited edition releases, bonus tracks in isolated parts of the world and other weird and wonderful places. These songs have been scattered over so many different places that even we struggle ourselves to remember where on earth all of these songs can be found.” 

“While bands around the world continue to navigate these uncertain times, we thought this would be the perfect opportunity to release this collection of cover songs, as well as new recordings, to keep the LORD machine moving while we continue to write new music,” he added. 

Additionally, Dowling pointed out that two of the songs featured in the compilation —  Savage Garden’s ‘To the Moon and Back’ and Judas Priest’s ‘Reckless’ – were the only songs specially recorded for the compilation.  Those two songs are only a small portion of the 23 (yes, 23) total songs featured in this recording, and are important because they are a highlight of the diversity in the collection.  The band also took on The Police (‘Message in a Bottle’) here, as well as songs from Bon Jovi, Helloween, Metallica, and Little River Band just to name a handful of other acts featured in the compilation.  The short and simple is that the bands covered here come from a wide range of genres.  From hard rock –Metallica, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Anthrax – to classic rock – Little River Band – to 80s hair rock – Bon Jovi – to prog – Queensryche, Symphony X – to mainstream pop and rock – The Police, Savage Garden – Lord takes on music from so many influences.  That diversity in the bands and music featured here helps to build the band’s reputation and at the same time, perhaps even introduce audiences to music to which they might not have otherwise listened.  If for no other reason, that diversity in the bands and songs will keep audiences engaged and entertained.  It is of course just one of the elements that make this recording so interesting.  The band’s performance of said songs adds to the record’s interest.

Lord’s take on The Police’s ‘Message in a Bottle’ is just one example of the importance of the band’s performances.  Lord’s take on the classic song is interesting in that while it stays largely true to its source material, it essentially amps up that original in a sort of 80s power metal style work.  That updated take — complete with machine gun-fast bass drum work, melodic guitar lines, and operatic vocals – shows that the song strangely enough works just as well in this case as in the original presentation.  It is not one of those woks that hits listeners in its first listen, either.  Rather, it will grow on listeners with each listening, highlighting its longevity.

The band’s take on a-ha’s ‘The Sun Always Shines on TV’ is yet another example of the band’s performances here.  In the case of this performance, the band has opted more for an 80s hair metal style performance that makes for quite the contrast against a-ha’s keyboard-driven original composition.  There is the slightest touch of a power ballad early on in the original composition, what with the string arrangement, but that soon gives way to the band’s more familiar new wave approach, which is more present throughout the song.  Lord’s take on the song, as noted, is more of an 80s hair power ballad type work.  It gives a-ha’s original quite the unique new identity in this case with its amped up take on the song.  Where it ends up standing with listeners will be left for those audiences to decide.  That aside, it definitely makes for its own interest. 

W.A.S.P. is another of the bands whose work is covered in this compilation.  In this case, Lord took on the band’s hit song ‘Wild Child.’  In this case, the stylistic approach taken by Lord is largely the same as that of W.A.S.P.  The difference is that Lord’s cover is actually an improvement on the original.  It would seem here that is more due to the production.  The production makes the song sound so much fuller and richer here than the original.  It makes the song sound more modern with a throwback feel.  To that end, it is yet another example of the impact of the band’s performances here, and the importance thereof.  When it is considered along with the other performances noted here and the rest of the record’s featured performances, the whole of those performances makes for even more engagement and entertainment.  It is just one more example of what makes this compilation worth hearing.  The sequencing of the songs featured in this compilation rounds out its most important elements.

The sequencing of Undercovers Vol. 1 is important to examine because of its role in the record’s general effect.  The record starts in contemplative fashion with its cover of Savage Garden’s ‘To the Moon and Back’ but very quickly after, it picks up with its take of Iron Maiden’s ‘Judas Be My Guide.’  It is not even until the record reaches its midpoint in its take of Cutting Crew’s ‘(I Just) Died In Your Arms’ that the album’s energy even remotely pulls back.  From that point on, the compilation’s energy remains relatively high, even as the band takes on what are some otherwise reserved songs.  Even in those cases, the band manages to amp up those songs, including their energies.  So overall, the sequencing ensures that the album’s energy remains relatively high throughout its 100-minute (one hour, 40 minute) run time.  That the record’s energy remains relatively high, and even gives a break point roughly halfway through ensures that the record will run fluidly throughout, ensuring even more, listeners’ engagement and entertainment.  When that certain engagement and entertainment is considered with the impact of the band’s unique performances and the variety of songs featured here, that whole makes the compilation overall, its own standout presentation.  Add in the fact that this compilation marks the first time that the band has ever united the previously recorded covers in one setting, and the compilation gains even more appeal.  It shows that this was not just some randomly recorded presentation used to appease contractual obligations.  Between this and everything else noted, the record in whole proves to be a covers collection that is actually worth hearing.

Lord’s new covers compilation Undercovers Vol. 1 is an interesting presentation that rockers and even pop music fans alike will find worth hearing at least once.  That is due in part to the songs featured in the recording.  The band does not just take on a bunch of hard rock and metal songs here, though there are a lot of those songs featured here.  The band also takes on songs from pop and pop rock acts, such as Savage Garden, The Police,  a-ha, and even Kylie Minogue.  That variety in itself makes for reason enough to hear this presentation.  That only two of the songs featured here were specially recorded for the compilation shows that this was not just some randomly thrown together presentation that was made to appease any contractual obligations for the band.  Rather, it was a way for the band to bring together so many of the covers that it has recorded over the course of its life.  That makes the presentation more special in itself.  The band’s performance of the featured covers makes for its own appeal.  That is because they give those originals their own unique identities from one to the next.  The songs’ sequencing rounds out the most important of the compilation’s elements.  That is because it ensures the record’s pacing remains stable throughout while also constantly giving listeners something interesting rather than redundant.  Each item noted here is unquestionably important in its own way to the whole of the compilation’s presentation.  All things considered, they make the record a work that despite being a covers compilation, still a presentation that is worth hearing, and at least once at that. Undercovers Vol. 1 is available now through Dominus Records.

More information on Undercovers Vol. 1 is available along with all of Lord’s latest news and more at:




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Rock Super Group Takes Top Honors In Phil’s Picks’ 2020 Best New EPs

Courtesy: Wiretap Records

Another year has come and another year is almost gone.  Only a handful of weeks remain in this year, which means many record companies have already turned their focus to 2021.  Even with the record labels turning their attention to the new year, there is still work to be done this year.  The work in question is a look back at the best of the year’s new music.  For this critic, that look back starts at the smallest level, EPs.  Those who have followed this critic’s daily ramblings year in and year out know that the year-enders have always started with the smallest records, the EPs, and this year is no different.  This year has seen a variety of interesting EPs released from across the musical universe.  They include records released by labels and independently by the acts in question. 

Featured in this critic’s list of this year’s are new offerings from Hell or Highwater (which is fronted by Atreyu’s Brandon Saller), Another Day Dawns, and even independent artist Vast Caldera among others.  Topping this year’s list is an offering from the “super group” In Parallel.

As with every year past, this critic’s list features not 10, but 15 titles.  The top 10 titles are the primary titles, while the next five are honorable mention titles.  With everything noted, here with out any further ado, is Phil’s Picks Top 10 New EPs of 2020.


  1. In Parallel – Fashioner
  2. Mark Morton – Ether
  3. Killswitch Engage – Atonement II: B-Sides For Charity
  4. Vast Caldera – Vast Caldera I
  5. Another Day Dawns – Stranger
  6. Hell or Highwater – Lost at Sonic Ranch
  7. Stabbing Westward – Dead and Gone
  8. Lord—Chaos Raining
  9. KB & The Idyllwilde – I Just Wanna Love You, I Just Wanna Let You
  10. The Run Around – Bombs Away
  11. Morgan Rose – Controlled Chaos
  12. Zero Theorum – The Killing: Part I
  13. Hold On Hollywood – Love Stories
  14. South of Eden – Talk
  15. The Jacks – Remember You

Next up from Phil’s Picks is the list of the year’s top new independent albums.  This year has produced some impressive new independent albums.  Stay tuned for that.

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Lord’s New EP Is A Strong Second Helping Of Its 2019 Album ‘Fallen Idols’

Courtesy: Dewar PR

Independent hard rock band Lord is giving its fans a bonus from its recently released album Fallen Idols.  The band is scheduled to release its new EP Chaos Raining is scheduled for release Friday.  The three-song record is an intriguing record because while it is being marketed as an EP, it is technically another of those records that is in reality more single than EP.  That is not to say that the record is a failure for the band.  Rather, its track listing does serve as something of a negative for the record’s presentation.  This will be discussed shortly.  While the track listing is undoubtedly an issue for Chaos Raining, it is the record’s only negative.  The EP’s musical content is very much a positive worth noting, so it will be addressed shortly.  The lyrical themes that accompany the EP’s musical content is notable in its own right and is also deserving of attention.  It will also be addressed later.  All three noted items are important in their own way to the whole of this EP.  All things considered, they make Chaos Raining a presentation that hard rock and metal fans will find worth hearing at least occasionally.

Lord’s forthcoming EP Chaos Raining is, for the most part, an enjoyable new offering from the independent hard rock band.  That is due in part to the record’s musical arrangements.  The arrangements in question are powerful, guitar-driven works that will appeal to fans of bands, such as Judas Priest, Dragonforce and Firewind.  That is evident through the combined guitar work of the band’s front man “Lord Tim” and fellow guitarist Mark Furtner as well as through “Lord Tim’s” operatic vocal delivery style.  Even the extended take of the EP’s title track deserves attention, with its keyboards and semi-industrial metal approach.  That element takes precedence in this song, but the original work’s guitar and drums are there.  The choral approach taken with the vocals gives the song a touch of an 80s hair metal sound.  This all seems like a lot, and it is, but somehow, the band manages to balance all of those elements for a whole that despite being nearly 10 minutes long, is still wholly entertaining in its own right.  Keeping that in mind along with the engagement and entertainment that ‘Chaos Raining’ and ‘A World Insane,’ the whole of the EP’s musical content offers audiences plenty of motivation to take in this record.  While the arrangements do echo the style of arrangement that the band has presented in its past works, the actual sound is different from those works.  In other words, the style is the same as in previous works, but the songs overall are not identical in their sound.  They are original in their own right, in layman’s terms.  Even set against one another, the arrangements here are original in their overall sound.  That makes the EP that much more worth hearing.

For all that the arrangements do to make Chaos Raining a positive new presentation from Lord, the songs overall are somewhat problematic.  As with so many other records that have been released this year, one can argue that considering the EP’s makeup, is being improperly marketed.  The EP is in fact more single than EP.  That is because the record’s title song is itself from another album.  The one extra original is likely a b-side that did not make the final cut for Fallen Idols.  The extended remix of ‘Chaos Raining’ is basically just a bonus track.  So while it is original in its own right, it is still just a remix of one of the record’s two original songs.  In other words, the EP is essentially a single from the band’s bigger 2019 album that also features two extra works.  One of those works is likely a castaway from the original sessions for that album while the other is just a re-worked version of the single.  Keeping that in mind, the record is still enjoyable to hear, but is still more single than EP.  Since it is being marketed as an EP, it still deserves its own spot on any critic’s list of the year’s top new EPs even despite everything noted.

While the makeup and marketing of Lord’s new EP is questionable, it does not make Chaos Raining a failure by any means.  It does impact the record’s place in any critic’s list of the year’s top new EPs, but is still a work that will appeal to hard rock and metal fans.  That is due in large part to the record’s musical content, though the musical content is just one part of what makes the record worth hearing.  The lyrical content that accompanies the musical content adds to that engagement.  The EP’s second song, ‘A World Insane’ comes across as a social commentary of sorts.  “Lord Tim” sings in the song’s chorus, “A world gone insane…we cry out in vain/And now with open arms/We carry on and try to find our way.”  Now while much of the song’s lyrics are indecipherable sans lyrics, just enough is understandable to make an inference about the theme.  “Lord Tim” mentions in the song’s second verse about looking around and seeing no one around, adding mention about being on the precipice.  In other words, the seeming statement hints at things being in a very bad state right now.  When this is considered along with the note of carrying on with arms wide open, it leads to the assumption that the song focuses not just on how bad things are, but of people’s resilience and determination to get through all of the bad.  This in itself is certain to generate interest and discussion among audiences.  It is just one of the ways in which the record’s lyrical content proves so important to its presentation.  The EP’s title track will generate its own interest with its seemingly more personal story.

“Lord Tim” sings in the lead verse of ‘Chaos Raining,’ “You cast your gaze upon my form/Into cold eyes that once were warm/Hardened by sorrow, I still bleed/I will arise from bended knee.”  He continues in the song’s second verse, “The days loom grey/Forever seem/My mind engaged in pain unseen/Suffer the past/Onward I roam/Through severed ties I walk alone.”  He adds in the song’s chorus, “Say goodbye/I’m lost forever/The storm, it rages on and on/I’m stronger/For every day that dies/I’ll wonder/The chaos raining down/I’m drowning under.”  As the song enters its third verse, “Lord Tim” sings, “The years estranged/Like endless waves/Our time is gone/Now swept away/Torn down/Rebuilt in iron gleam/This broken man becomes machine.”  At this point, the song returns to its chorus once more with its statement about being stronger despite everything.  It can be inferred between that statement and the commentary in the verses that this song focuses on someone who is pushing on even as the world seems to fall down around him; a person who has been mentally and personally “rebuilt.”  As always, this is just this critic’s interpretation. Hopefully it is close to being a correct interpretation if not completely correct.  That aside, it is content that is certain to generate its own share of discussion among audiences, especially when it is considered alongside the song’s musical arrangement.  All things considered, the song’s thought provoking lyrical content is just one more way in which the EP’s lyrical themes prove to be just as important to its presentation as its musical arrangements.  Those arrangements and the lyrical content together make Chaos Raining a record that while maybe not the purest example of an EP, still a record that heavy rock fans will appreciate.

Lord’s forthcoming EP Chaos Raining is a work that will appeal to a wide range of hard rock and metal fans.  That is due to its musical arrangements and its lyrical content, as noted here.  The musical arrangements are everything that audiences have come to expect from the band.  The riffs liken themselves to works from the like of Judas Priest, Firewind and Dragonforce at the same time.  The lyrical themes presented within the record’s two original songs will generate their own engagement among audiences as they are certainly thought provoking, as also noted here.  The one downside to the whole thing is that it is being marketed as an EP.  This is important to note because the “EP’s” title track is itself a single from the band’s 2019 album Fallen Idols.  Other than that one track, there is only one other original and then an extended take of the record’s title track.  Keeping all of this in mind, this record is really more a single with two extra tracks than an actual EP.  Even with that in mind, it is not enough to prevent a person from wanting to listen to this record.  It is just something to note, and taken into consideration with the record’s overall content, it proves itself to be a work that will appeal widely to hard rock and metal fans.  It will be available Friday.  According to a post on the band’s official Facebook page, the record’s physical copies are already sold out in pre-orders, so right now, only digital pre-orders for the record are available.  More information on Chaos Raining is available along with all of Lord’s latest news and more at:




Website: http://www.lord.net.au

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/lordofficial

Twitter: http://twitter.com/lordofficial



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