Review by Andy Houghton for MPM
Finnish hard rock band Lost Divison formed in 2015 and released their debut single, ‘Wish You Were Dead’, with vocalist Teija Lämpsä three years later.
The band then changed their lead singer and so now the current line up comprises Maija Vaisanen (vocals), Antti Ovaska (rhythm guitar), Jaakko Korpi (lead guitar), Mikael Luukela (bass) and Juha-Matti Sipola (drums).
‘Cuts and Scars’ is the band’s debut album, with ten riff-heavy tracks that lie at the metal end of the spectrum. The album opens with ‘In Memoriam 2.0’, a punchy introduction to the band’s capabilities. Instrumentally things are pretty solid – it’s a toe-tapping track enhanced by a soaring guitar solo.
However, one consequence of the powerful instrumentals is that they have a tendency to overwhelm Vaisanen’s vocals. I’m not sure whether this is a reflection on her voice, or on the studio mix, but the balance between vocals and instrumentals feels ‘off’ and this means that her vocals tend to get lost in amongst everything else. When slightly more subdued tracks do come along – such as ‘I’d Rather Die’ or ‘Mayhem’ – then Vaisanen’s voice comes to the fore and we get a better idea what she’s capable of.
Vocal balance aside, there are some great tracks on offer here. Both ‘Stay’ and ‘No God’ are highlights: high-energy tracks carried forwards by the sheer weight of their driving riffs. Closing track ‘Mayhem’ is also noteworthy, which nice melodic shifts accompanied by some enjoyable work on guitar.
All-in-all, ‘Cuts and Scars’ marks a solid debut album from Lost Division. With just a few production tweaks, I suspect their future offerings will be better still.
- In Memoriam 2.0
- I’d Rather Die
- No God
- The Queen
- The Killer
- Lovely Day
‘Cuts and Scars’ is released on May 28th, 2021.
Maija Väisänen – Vocals
Antti Ovaska – Rhythm Guitar
Jaakko Korpi – Lead Guitar
Mikael Luukela – Bass
Juha-Matti Sipola – Drums