I’m definitely a fan of how the creative minds behind LVCRFT handle writing a holiday-themed song. There are some listeners who will decide within seconds that they’re hearing a gimmick tune. An attentive listener, however, will hear how producer/songwriter and engineer Peter Wade, songwriter Amanda Warner, and third creative mastermind Evan Bogart breathe magic into V’s dozen songs that help make it more than just a raucous October-fueled lark. I hear participants who are having fun through every minute of “Scream for Halloween”, for instance, but I’m also hearing serious musical performers and composers’ intent on providing a robust, enduring listening experience.
“Everyday is Halloween” blows open the album’s beginning. The restless rush of energy flowing from this tune is a first-class way to bring listeners into V’s world. It sails on the back of brisk instrumentation and a spirited vocal performance. Choruses are one of the strong suits defining this collection and “Everyday is Halloween” has one of the album’s best. “Bad Witches” has a funky bounce lacking from many of the other tracks and a small bevy of instrumentation powering the cut. Fat bass and uptempo percussion though are crucial components.
Monte Revolta’s turn during the track “Purgatory” is a star-making moment during this track listing. LVCRFT deserves plaudits for how they consistently slap a fresh coat of paint on venerable ideas/concepts such as they do for this song and it’s an entertaining ride from start to finish.
They certainly know how to tap into the Halloween spirit. “Scream! (For Halloween)” is full of familiar imagery, albeit phrased in a distinctive fashion, and the song sounds as if it’s bursting into being for much of its duration. Using two lead singers gives some added diversity to the track and juxtaposing a male and female voice proves to be the obvious approach for the tune. It gives “Scream! (For Halloween)” two different “perspectives” and the notable differences between their respective slants on the song embed further diversity in the composition.
“Vendetta” shows listeners a score of different musical faces. It doesn’t settle in one particular direction for long and the various twists and turns always manage to hold our attention. “Late Night Rider” is a vigorous musical workout with an arrangement that bears some resemblance to other moments on the album. There are enough differences, however, to sustain this track as its own work. “Feel Like Halloween” is another high-calorie burn exercise that embraces an up-tempo pace and practically vibrates your sternum with its thumping bass. LVCRFT proves expert at crafting physically engaging musical narratives packed with impossible-to-ignore moments.
It’s arguably LVCRFT’s finest album yet in the project’s brief existence. V is the fifth album release from LVCRFT which, at this point, argues that the project is some sort of side-effort that receives whatever’s left over of the brain trust’s creative firepower. Instead, Warner, Wade, and Bogart invest every bit as much of the same musical creativity into this as any of their other work gets, it just manifests itself in a different fashion.