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On Lucifer’s Infamous Decibel Magazine Cover Debacle and Their New Song, “Ghosts”

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When Lucifer first burst upon the scene several years ago, their biggest claim to fame soon became landing a Decibel Magazine cover to widespread confusion. The magazine is selective about their cover stars, as they should be, and while landing a cover slot on any magazine’s cover is a huge deal, within our little metal world the most sought-after print cover honor is generally regarded as the one belonging to our fine, feathered, beer-throwing, vomiting-on-children friends 90 miles to the south.

In Decibel lore, the Lucifer cover incident ranks second only to their infamous Trivium cover. The commonly held opinion at the time was that it was way too soon for Lucifer, and that claims of “doom metal’s next big thing” were very premature. That bold assertion, together with the cover, ended up hurting Lucifer more than it helped, generating immediate blowback for a band that showed some promise but were still seeking their own identity in a crowded genre, and the backlash against them was swift and furious. It’s too bad, really, because it wasn’t their fault — I’d take that Decibel cover if offered too, wouldn’t you?? They just needed time on their own to develop without a prominent force attempting to generate hype. To be clear, I’m not blaming Decibel either… the whole thing was just a bizarre miscalculation. Dio knows, I / MetalSucks have been guilty of doing the same thing with bands before.

In any case, that was four and a half years ago, during which time Lucifer have had plenty of time to hone their craft, releasing a follow-up album in 2018 and today announcing another one for later this year. While my five-year-old and admittedly fuzzy recollection of Lucifer’s music back then amounts to “it was fine/adequate but nothing special,” I’m really digging their new single, “Ghosts.” I can’t point to anything specific about the tune that’s better than their older material, but I can say that it just sounds more pro, more defined, expressing a clearer vision of the band’s unique artistic voice, and the band has clearly honed their songwriting chops, too. Put another way, it doesn’t sound like Lucifer are trying to fit in; they’re just being themselves, and it’s working. Sure, their music is firmly rooted in psych and retro metal, but the approach, which has touches of AOR, feels like their own. Into it!

Check out “Ghosts” below. Lucifer III comes out on March 20 via Century Media; pre-order here. Upcoming tour dates posted underneath the embed.

North America Part III Tour w/Savage Master, Overdose

January 24 – Jacksonville, FL – 1904 Music Hall
January 25 – Miami, FL – Churchill’s Pub
January 26 – Orlando, FL – Will’s Pub

The Third Commandment Europe 2020 Part I Tour/l

May 7 – Hamburg DE, Knust
May 8 – Essen DE, Turock
May 9 – Köln DE, Helios 37
May 10 – Den Bosch NL, Willem Twee 
May 12 – London UK, Underworld
May 13 – Paris FR, Petit Bain
May 14 – Strasbourg FR, La Laiterie
May 15 – Kaiserslautern DE, Kammgarn
May 16 – Nürnberg DE, Hirsch
May 17 – Praha CZ, Nová Chmelnice
May 19 – Poznan PL, U Bazyla
May 20 – Dresden DE, Scheune
May 21 – Berlin DE, Lido
May 22 – Hannover DE, Bei Chez Heinz
May 23 – Odense DK, Posten
May 29 – Stockholm SWE, Debaser Strand
May 30 – Göteborg SWE, Pustervik

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