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The Last Republic

The Last Republic, comprising of five musical geniuses, face growing issues in today's society such as the media, war and drug abuse and come out with a masterpiece worthy of bands ten times more mainstream than these guys. They are relatively new to the scene having formed in just 2008. 'Parade' which was released on the first of November 2010 is not just rock music, it's rock music with a deeper meaning.

Unlike some lyrics these days, it's not just a babble of gibberish coming from the mouth of the vocalist. One of the best new bands to emerge from Wales? Of course not! More like one of the best from the whole of Great Britain if you ask me.

The opener is 'CCTV' which is an astronomic, meaningful track that combines stunning falsetto which is almost Muse-like in places, heavenly guitar riffs and some harsh lyrics that 'cut my body into pieces' as Jonnie Owen quite rightly sings. This is a rock song in every way yet somehow I just find it simply beautiful. Ok, so I hear you asking 'How the heck can rock music be beautiful?!' I suggest you take a listen is you don't believe me, the piano cuts through the heavy guitars hauntingly and makes it...well, beautiful. That's the only way to describe it. This track conveys the common ideology that Big Brother is watching you. Be afraid. Be very afraid.

The album progresses into 'Let's Make Bombs' where the whole band continue to impress on a huge scale. Admittedly, it's slow to kick in but when it does, you feel as if you've just downed ten Lucozade shots and are in the process of an insanely intense sugar rush; you know, bouncing off the walls and all. The contrast of the slow, melodic verses to the war zone themed chorus almost makes your brain explode from the pure energy and euphoria it creates within you.

The pace slows down significantly in 'As Darkness Calls' which lulls you into a dream world only to be dragged back to earth when the much more lively rhythms of '(C'mon) Flood The Gates' fill your ears almost violently. It seems to be mildly painful...but in a good way.

The merge into 'The City' creates a much darker, moody atmosphere which resembles that of indie rockers, Interpol. This dramatic change in attitude just grasps the attention of gobsmacked listeners all over again. These guys certainly know what strings to pull to induce a state of mind-control on their audience in order for them to become completely lost in the amazing sounds of The Last Republic.

'When Fools Rush In' is another slow-paced phenomenon with a twist. This time it's the extravagant distortion which is thrown in at every opportunity that sets the track apart from others in the same genre. I feel like I'm floating peacefully past galaxies as this futuristic sounding song slowly sends me insane. That's fine by me though, insane is good as long as it's induced by the unbelievable anthems this band is so talented at conjuring up.

'The Fear' sounds like it should be the soundtrack to a horror movie as Owen chants 'When you're alone' and the lyrics seems to follow some sort of demon/ghost story. This eerie track is followed by 'Perfect Stranger', which is frankly rather odd. Simple piano melodies are once again triumphant over heavy guitar riffs and however strange this is to hear, it creates something different to most bands around today. We all know change is good most of the time and this band is no exception as this album just goes from strength to strength.

The chorus of 'Control' produces just the right amount of adrenaline as an antidote to the creepy feel the rest of the song builds up inside your head. All the guitar parts are extremely simple yet this type of repetitiveness is a good thing as it just builds up tension. Owen switches back to his chilling falsetto abilities at the end of the track which were used earlier in the album but to a totally different effect. All I can say is that this track truly blew me away. Wow.

The title track gently hacks through the falsetto of the previous song and rapidly de-petrifies you after the terrifying feel that has arisen. This is the sort of song that will make you feel like you're in a hollywood movie. You know that feeling when you're looking out of the window with earphones in, music full-blast, just watching the world fly by? That's the emotion this song activates to it's full extent.

This transcendent album closes with 'When The Crows Come Calling'; a strong track which experiments with various paces and a rather unusual song structure. It has a bit more 'umph' than the previous track yet maintains its honesty and heartfelt feelings.

This is undeniably an album which nobody should turn down the opportunity to listen to. It is truly moving and emotional yet experiments with much more weighty sounds which you would not expect to accompany lyrics as delicate as these. It's the perfect combination for all rock fans, give these guy some time and I reckon they'll be playing at the legendary Wembley stadium. Someday. Just keep an eye on these because whatever it is, they have it.


Review by Abigail Suter

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***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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