There are bands that take their music seriously, and then there is Light Bearer. Behind the monolithic riffs and post-metal crescendos is a group of musicians who have a story to tell, and Light Bearer’s scheduled four-album cycle is their medium. Drawing from a wide array of influences, including the Book of Genesis, Dante’s Inferno, Paradise Lost, and His Dark Materials, Light Bearer have put together an epic narrative as a metaphor for human nature and the corruption of religion. Also presented over the tetralogy are ideologies on such diverse subjects as gender discrimination, the evolution of sexuality, and cultural stereotypes. This is a band that has put a great deal of time and thought into their project, and so far the results are stunning.
The central story goes something like this: in Lapsus, their debut LP, God creates the angels, with Lucifer his most beloved. When the Almighty chooses mankind as his subjects of choice, he demands the angels bow to them; however, in his devotion, Lucifer refuses to bow to any but God himself. Lucifer is cast out for his insolence, and realizes how the creator’s vanity has made him a tyrant. Lucifer becomes determined to enlighten mankind to their God’s evil ways. He leads a rebellion against God, but is eventually cast into the void of Hell. In his eternal prison, the Light Bearer concedes that he no longer belongs in Heaven, for without God’s love, he is forever lost.
Beyond the Infinite: The Assembly of God serves as a prequel to Lapsus. In the band’s words, the EP is “an elaboration of the introduction to Lapsus. The lyrics are exalting the false God and his claim over creation – this is the lying sermon.” Accordingly, the song begins with similar creepy atmosphere as its shortened Lapsus version. Here, however, the spoken-word intro precedes the chime motif, which is subsequently built upon. Staccato guitar notes and dramatic tom-tom rolls drive the song tensely on until everything drops out. The first riff then bursts in, with Alex CF’s belted vocals following suit. The soundscapes add a chaotic layer beneath the instruments, as if the matter of the universe is swirling and condensing around the musicians as they play. Brilliantly syncopated drumming accompanies an ethereal break, foreshadowing the main line from Primum Movens. Dissonant guitar lines give way to crashing riffs as the song builds, with three distinct peaks before breaking into…silence?
Oh, that’s right, it’s an introduction. Of course it ends on a cliffhanger. Onward, then, to Lapsus.