Laugh at the Fakes

Dethrone the Crown

Written by: BW on 23/11/2014 23:00:40

When I got the brief for this Toronto based band, I was told they were like Dio or the mighty Iron Maiden. Well, it isn’t easy to spot to start with, especially when the screaming kicks in. As this album pans out though you begin to see why they have that likeness at times, but it isn’t always that clear cut, especially with a band who show off such diversity. If anything I think that Laugh at the Fakes sound more like a non sadistic variant of Scandanavian robe wearers, Ghost. There is a bit more oomph about this lot. The drums are lightning fast, but in a much more constant vibe, not to mention the vocals are a hefty mix of melody, scream and spoken word. It almost gives me a feeling of what would happen if Maiden was fronted by Dreamtheater frontman James La Brie. I’ll come back to why later.

If I’m being honest though, I genuinely can hear subtle hints of “The Maiden” in certain songs off of this album, with the drumming of the cymbal mounts and some of that classic guitaring, but if anything there are so many more bands that I’d say they lean more towards than that. The blend of varied styles on this album is rather staggering. “Killing Time” does indeed have those characteristics I mentioned, but the singing is a little more subtle and doesn’t quite cut the air as much as Bruce Dickinson (and only he) can. The biggest plus side for this entire album though is that the music is enthralling in the quality it shows you from minute one. The bridge work is really tight and some of the riffs are hair on your neck raising. This is a record that needs the volume turned up to 12, let alone 11 to get the best out of it, as the instrument quality is very impressive indeed.

Delving more into this album, you really get a great feel for it. There is just that little extra layer of quality than what I’ve listened to in the past little while. Each track is filled with a generous mix of past and present, which results in some truly impressive material. “Got No Regrets” has a lot of double kicks and some soulful guitar work, with said instruments being rather harmonic together. I simply can’t fault what I’m hearing and really enjoy letting my brain work in overdrive trying to figure out where parts of the track were inspired from, at least when I have my review head on. Those little hints of Dio, Maiden, even Metallica seem to slip in from nowhere, as well as a more individual singing ability which is the major individual factor for Laugh at the Fakes.

Even on the slower tracks like “Harmonica Playing Man” you have to admire the echo on the intro which adds haunting feelings to the track. Listening to the words you get the feeling that this is the way they want it to be. The emotion I get from the album as a whole is that musically they are passionate about what they do and don’t really want to settle for less than perfection. I’m not joking when I say that every track sounds great from an instrumental point of view and you feel an instant liking to everything from that side. It takes a little more time to warm to frontman, Everett Mason, but you do as time goes on. Here is where I go back to the James La Brie statement.

For fans of a band, you get used to listening to the singer and think nothing of it, but to those who aren’t used to it, like fans are, some may either take a while to get used to them or just shove their noses up straight away and ignore the band because of it. I have to say it has taken a few listens to get used to him, but as time goes on, Everett is starting to grow on me, much like La Brie did with Dreamtheater.

As I do warm to him though, the album simply becomes a fantastic advertisement for rock and metal in general. It has such a well crafted blend of what you want from a genre heavy in history and longevity and it is lovely to have a band who are bringing a lot of what has been before screaming to the present day with a bit of extra flair.

Simply put the whole album sounds incredible. I find that the shredding guitars and almost primal drums seem to make me want to get more into them the more I listen. The different ways in which this album runs is something I don’t get to see often in this day and age, but with such an eclectic variation you can’t go wrong. “Death Awaits” shows the aggressiveness of metal through breakneck drumming and some short and sharp chords, as well as some well blended keyboards coming in so gently. Then there’s “Fighting Dirty” with the soulful intro blended with some smooth and controlled riffs. This is only a small example of how many directions this album goes, but the rest you’ll have to find for yourself.

I have to say that Laugh at the Fakes are a band i had never heard of until this point. I now will be looking into them more. They seem to have their heads screwed on and their musical abilities set right. The filler side of things is on a minimum and the killer stuff is in plentiful supply. Some of the riffage is just downright insane and although it may not be progressively intricate it is just downright sensual in every conceivable way. They make me want to listen again, but more importantly, they make me want to listen to more of their work.

No wonder they called themselves Laugh at the Fakes….. These guys could well be the real deal if they keep this up.

Download: Fighting Dirty, Death Awaits, Harmonica Playing Man, Killing Time
For The Fans Of: Iron Maiden, Dreamtheater, Metallica,

Release date 14.11.2014
Self Released

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