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Life Of Agony - A Place Where There’s No More Pain album review

New York alt.metallers rise from the ashes in a triumphant

Cover art for Life Of Agony - A Place Where There’s No More Pain album

It’s 12 years since LOA’s last album, Broken Valley, and in the intervening time even the band thought that would be a full stop on their story. They’d been in a dark place – singer Mina Caputo has since talked about considering suicide as she struggled with her identity. But after she came out as transgender, the band reconvened, stronger for it, and have returned with a belter.

As ever, the themes are weighty, tackling abuse, selfharm, death, loneliness and empty celebrity culture. But musically they’re punching out of the darkness with gleaming alternative metal anthems packed with soaring, moshpit-baiting choruses, strutting like Stone Temple Pilots and bloodying noses like Helmet thanks to Joey Z’s deeply 90s (and that is totally meant as a compliment) guitar work, part groove-heavy chug, part peacock soloing. Which make the stark gloom of closing piano ballad Little Spots Of You all the more affecting.

Emma has been writing about music for 25 years, and is a regular contributor to Classic Rock, Metal Hammer, Prog and Louder. During that time her words have also appeared in publications including Kerrang!, Melody Maker, Select, The Blues Magazine and many more. She is also a professional pedant and grammar nerd and has worked as a copy editor on everything from film titles through to high-end property magazines. In her spare time, when not at gigs, you’ll find her at her local stables hanging out with a bunch of extremely characterful horses.