Genre: Modern / Alternative Heavy Rock
Release: February 2021
In the alternative scene and the adventurous knitting of various musical genres, Thessaloniki is a big deal. The debut album “Then” of Cargo Lift is the latest proof. Formed in 2016 and already having two EPs on their backs (“First” 2017 & “Disguised” 2019), Cargo Lift released their first full-length 40-minute album, offering a particularly complex experience to the listener. Musically speaking, they move on a very vague path, where, like a puzzle, different aspects of the hard sound coexist / click together harmoniously. I don’t know if there is a single umbrella term to cover the range of their compositions, but if there is, it certainly does them injustice. The elements that compose “Then” basically come from the modern American heavy rock world, combined with western grunge, a bit of metal progressive, a pinch of Palm Desert rock and some sudden pop touches. All of the above are embraced by a need to return to the aesthetics of the late ‘90s – early‘ 00s, or so I see it, with well-filtered influences. In the most theoretical part of the album, I think the atmosphere that is created is a bit dark, partly ominous, definitely heavily charged. Lyrically, Cargo Lift deal with what is happening around us, the frustrating situation of the pandemic but also the general morbidity of the society as a whole, emotions which are intensified and relieved by the outbursts of the vocals. As a whole, I believe “Then” will win the bet with the listeners, as well as have a future especially on the radio stations, as most of their tracks can easily gain airplay. On the less positive side, at moments i felt that something was bothering me and I realized it relatively late. Due to the fact that I’ve watched the band play live a couple of years back and witnessed the energy that their singer brings out, I think he didn’t unwind himself so much in the recordings. I was expecting him more juicy, angsty, explosive. His vocal performance isn’t bad, but he could definitely goa bit more nuclear. Finally, I would prefer it if the album opened with another song, firstly because the record opens abruptly and secondly because other tracks of the album have much more nerve and momentum (they’d set the atmosphere right away). “Break Out”, for example, would be ideal.