Lead by the titanic pipes of pocket rocket Virginia Lillye, Lillyé is no average heavy rock outfit.
On the live front they have proven themselves as a veritable powerhouse able to blow most other bands away on any given night. The full-length follow up to their 2014 EP debut has been long anticipated and given the band’s fearsome reputation on stage, Evolve comes loaded with promise.
True to its title, this release is a reflection of both how Lillyé’s sound has developed across the past four years and how out-of-the-ordinary is their style. First single and opening track ‘Run’ is a flat out driving rock cut, perhaps the most orthodox song to be found on the album. The bulk of Evolve is songs that are wildly unpredictable in spite of their conventional structure, primarily because of the way Lillye uses her huge voice to slash across the angular riffs of Matt Ellis. Ellis is an all-out machine, turning out a constant stream of technical riffing over the jazz-inflected bedrock of Bennet Livingstone’s timekeeping and the bass playing of Christian Lauria.
‘In The End’ is the perfect example of the band’s creativity as Ellis churns through an array of different patterns within the first minute, over which Lillye is able to weave her vocal magic. Hers is an old-school rock voice in the mould of 70s and 80s hard rock belters but distinctively her own, powerful and soaring, carving out a melody line where none has any right to be. It’s a dextrous combination that makes for some exciting listening. The intro of ‘Better Days’ offers a short respite from the furious rock until they unleash yet another catchy riff and the action starts again; in ‘Surrender’ Lillye steps up another level with her vocal attack.
Evolve is an album without a dull moment, a supreme example of modern fiery hard rock from a band that can stand up with the best from anywhere.
- In the End
- Brittle Glass
- Better Days
- It is What it Was
- Take On Me
- Grass is Greener
- Through My Soul