Leviathan – S/T EP


Having grown up on all sorts of hard rock and metal, bands like Leviathan that take an old-school approach to the genre are always a pleasure to hear. The New York four-piece rose from the remains of All for Nothing and recently released their debut, self-titled EP. Though the group’s music clearly reflects some of the best aspects of their predecessors and doesn’t necessarily break any new musical ground, this EP is a solid effort that serves as a good introduction to the band.
Leviathan is a powerful group fronted by vocalist Shane Tierney with Chris Gardiner on bass, Mike Otero providing the guitar, and Danny Rivera rounding out the lineup on drums. While the music is driving and hypnotic, it really seems to stand as the framework on which the vocals and lyrics are laid. That’s not to say the music isn’t strong, but the vocals are definitely in the forefront. This style gives the breaks in the songs, where there are no vocals, just a little bit more punch than otherwise expected. Tierney’s voice wholly reminds me of Glenn Danzig, so if you are a fan of his style Leviathan is sure to please – and because the lyrics are such a focal point of the music here, I’m happy Leviathan made sure to include all the song lyrics in the liner notes.
The whole EP bubbles on the surface of dark, melodic metal. Leviathan is laid back enough that the music doesn’t assault your senses, but it does demand notice. They move between different speed and style changes with relative ease – while most of the tracks here are all-out rockers, songs like “Love Eternal” show they can slow it down and still sound heavy. I love the nimble bass line and scorching guitar on “Dirty Angel,” and this is probably my favorite track on the EP because the music and vocals just seem to really come together well.
For a first release, I’m impressed and interested in hearing more. I do get somewhat of a sense that these guys are still holding back a little bit and being tentative about some aspects of their music. I’m confident that if they let loose just a little more their next release could be absolutely explosive. Leviathan’s debut is well worth checking out, especially for fans of older metal, and if you live in the New York or New Jersey area I’d recommend catching their live show.