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Lotus Mason – Lotus Mason (Review)

Lotus Mason LP

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 3 out of 5

LOTUS Mason have delivered a truly diverse pop-rock album with their eponymous debut.

Inspired by everyone from Bowie to Muse via Keane and Rufus Wainwright, the album draws from the ‘80s and ‘90s as well as the current indie and dance scene. As such, it’s eclectic enough to offer something for everyone, while also running the risk of not being entirely satisfying.

In its favour, it boasts an enigmatic vocalist in Blair Jollands who has garnered favourable comparisons with everyone from Wainwright to Antony & The Johnsons via Richard Ashcroft, and who lends each song a very distinct flavour.

The London pop rockers are therefore an act well worth discovering, whose ability to mix things up is admirable if not always successful.

Album opener Beso is a terrific starting point, though, a piano based pop-dance offering that’s evocative of Keane, albeit with a darker, edgier vocal to guide it and a genuinely hypnotic back-beat.

Former single Rust & Roll also boasts a distinctly ‘90s Suede vibe and boasts a cracking chorus – and one that could have been ripped right from Brett Anderson’s vocal chords.

Apple changes tempo once more, aspiring to the operatic pop of bands like Muse or even Queen, yet just about getting away with it, while Automatic Human lays down a cheesy dance vibe that’s more kitsch ‘80s. It’s one of the weaker moments.

But then this is the way the album plays out… great moments, followed by average ones.

Dream Surreal is another album highlight, the guitar riffs and slick beats lending it an indie-pop vibe that’s given darker coating by Jollands’ Bowie-esque vocal, while Do You Love Me re-introduces the disposable pop element with more kitsch elements.

And so on and so forth… but Lotus Mason does enough to make this particular outfit one to follow and, more often than not, savour.

Download picks: Beso, Rust & Roll, Dream Surreal, Dream of You

Track listing:

  1. Beso
  2. Rust & Roll
  3. Apple
  4. Automatic Human
  5. Dream Surreal
  6. Do You Love Me
  7. Broken Silence
  8. Honey Trap
  9. Dream of You
  10. Signs of Life
  11. Start Again