Lifer is all about grit. Right from the music to the lyrics to the vocals, it’s old school thrash with some stoner/sludge/doom (take your pick) mixed in. Even the band name is grimy slang originating, from what I’ve gathered, as a Navy acronym for those in service that do just enough to get by so that they can eventually collect pension; Lazy Inefficient Fucker Expecting Retirement. More commonly, aside from the association with those sentenced to life in prison, the term can also apply to people that are generally lacking desire to leave their current environment for something better. Hope you learned something new reading that because I certainly did researching it..oh, and it’s also the title of a pretty sick Down song. Pretty sure most of you knew that one already.
Their 2011 debut album, “Cursing Them Out,” is composed of screams from the minds of those that may have witnessed too much within their time. Whether it may be pain, anger, or regret that is being expressed, it is always candid and raw. But most of all, this album makes me want to mosh with my two year old around the living room. I’ve been wearing this CD out so much that once the little monster hears it, he turns into that asshole at shows that keeps on shoving and shoving until you turn around and deck ’em out of pure frustration. Not to say that I deck the kid.. but I do watch him with pride. He’s a natural.
This is the kind of music that makes you feel like you can take on the fucking world and rise from the broken masses bloodied but triumphant. The image to the left, taken from David Mack’s Kabuki comic series, describes exactly what the essence of this album is to me. Kicking around a few plastic containers around the house with a toddler is only a natural extension of that feeling.
“I feel frustration pushing down on me
This is my way of life the pain that no one feels
I pray for mercy and I pray for you
Losing every time
Ain’t no coming back now”
Personal favorites on this album would be: “Loss” -a guitar instrumental dedicated to “Aaron Evans, Renwa. and David Jones” that succinctly embodies its title, “Nothing Left to Lose” satisfies a bass whore like myself while maintaining the chaotic energy that most thrash thrives on, and “Broken Bones” shines vocally with enriching backup and has the meanest guitar solo during the last minute of the song which prompted someone I know to describe Web’s playing by saying emphatically, “that guitar is his bitch and he put her out in the street to make him money.” Speaking of great riffage, “Goathead” also shines in that area from the riff in the opening that gives an adrenaline rush like a near death experience would to the riff that comes in around the 4:33 mark of the track.
“Rise above your fucking enemy
Lies crimes of humanity
Getting high live too fast
Gonna fuck this shit till the end”
Thank you beer, beards, family, girlfriends, and a minute amount of tea for delivering Lifer to us. Cheers!