Delirium represents a major shift in Lacuna Coil’s 20 year history following the departure of three members, leaving Marco Coti Zelati in charge of laying down all the music for this album.
It’s a change marked by a heavier execution and more aggressive approach, highlighted immediately by ‘House of Shame’ with Andreo Ferro providing the vocal focus with Christina Scabbia in a background role. Of course, bands can get heavier without necessarily becoming more interesting, and that’s something that Lacuna Coil has long needed to do. On Delirium, they take steps in that direction, opening up their songs with the addition of lead guitar work from an array of guests including Myles Kennedy from Alter Bridge who steps up with a solo in the balladic ‘Downfall’ that adds a bit of sparkle to an otherwise pretty standard Lacuna Coil track. Still, while Zelati’s riff repertoire remains as limited as ever, the guitar breaks and Ferro’s growth and maturity as a vocalist make the first half of Delirium stand up pretty tall, and Scabbia is delightful as always, particularly on the catchy if unadorned title track.
Then in the middle of the album it almost comes apart. ‘Take Me Home’ and the awfully-titled ‘You Love Me ‘Cause I Hate You’ are just bad, ill-begotten songs with little to recommend them. Fortunately, Delirium turns another corner and gets back on track with the worthy single ‘Ghost in the Mist’; indeed the back half of the album is almost as strong as the first, ending on something of an ethereal note in the form of ‘Ultima Ratio’.
If Delirium is designed as the band’s redefinition then Lacuna Coil has done it mostly right, with enough of their old character to be recognisable and plenty of new aspects to move them forward. If only they’d left off those two songs in the middle.
1. The House of Shame
2. Broken Things
4. Blood, Tears, Dust
6. Take Me Home
7. You Love Me ‘Cause I Hate You
8. Ghost in the Mist
9. My Demons
11. Ultima Ratio