Review: Lazarus Dream – Lifeline
Pride & Joy Music (June 17th, 2022)
Reviewer: Dan Mann
Lazarus Dream return with the follow up to 2020’s ‘Alive‘, an album I very much enjoyed. Once again we have that same dynamic combination of vocalist Carsten Lizard Shultz and multi-instrumentalist Markus Pfeffe, who together with an excellent cast of guest musicians, Markus Kullmann,Andy Lübbert, Thomas Rieder, Jorris Guilbaud, Thomas Nitschke and Derek Sherian, deliver 14 tracks of hard rock for our aural pleasure!
Starting with a track that’s nearly seven minutes long is either ballsy or mad, but ‘Dead End Symphony‘ not only amply sets the scene of what’s to come, it is one hell of a classy song to boot. Helped with the expert production steering of Rolf Munkes, plus the keyboardship of Derek Sherian, we are presented with a multi layered tour de force, without any muddying of the various elements. What a superb way to kick things off.
Second track ‘Don’t Took Down‘ would happily slot into Carsten’s solo opus ‘The Day The Earth Stopped Turning‘, an album I absolutly love, so hardly any suprise that I love this track too. So we are very much off to a good start, although to be honest it really would have to be a total car crash for me not to like another Lazarus Dream album. Why? Well the elements that are the building bricks for albums like ‘Lifeline‘, pounding, tight bass lines, classic rock keyboards, tight & controlled guitar and of course those golden tonsels of Carsten, plus that quintessential German hard rock sound, are some of the very things that help me instantly connect with the music.
It’s not all in your face stuff, tracks like ‘Love Without A Net‘ and ‘Save Our Souls‘ take us into a more melodic rock area, showing that it’s not all about showboating and they also reinforces the quality of the writing as well as the performance.
In all honesty there’s only one track on the album that maybe doesn’t grab me quite as much as the others. I can’t quite put my finger on why ‘Surrounded By Strangers‘ (CD Bonus Track) doesn’t. It’s far from mediocre, maybe it’ll be one of those songs that weeks later suddenly clicks.
Rounding things off on this promo is a cover of 80’s American synth-pop band Animotion’s ‘I Engineer‘, an unusual song to cover, but it works, giving the album a foot tapping finale.
Well as I hinted earlier, it was a fairly safe bet that I’d like ‘Lifeline‘. The album goes to show once again what a strong combination Carsten & Markus are. This is such a delightful slab of hard rock and it’ll certainly be added to my list of favorite releases of 2022.