Published Nov 06, 2018After releasing their debut full-length Lightless Walk to critical acclaim, Salt Lake City chaotic hardcore act Cult Leader had a pretty high standard to match on their sophomore album. Luckily, A Patient Man lives up to the hype while providing a more well-rounded view of who this band are and what they do.
The band come right out of the gate with as much aggression as possible, delivering rapid-fire blast beats and frantic guitar riffs on "I Am Healed." They continue their full-bore assault on your ears with "Curse of Satisfaction" and "Isolation In the Land of Milk and Honey" before making a drastic switch to the slow, melodic material the band have dabbled with on previous releases.
Following a thunderous breakdown, clean, delayed guitars ring through, along with vocalist Anthony Lucero's low singing on "To: Achlys." The band continue their ambient, melodic break on "A World of Joy," which perfectly segues back to bludgeoning, with thick distortion and blast beats in the song's final moments.
Writing clean material isn't new for Cult Leader, but comes to full fruition on A Patient Man. The band sound more comfortable now in crafting lengthy melodic tracks, and do a fine job pacing the two sides of the band throughout the record. While nearly half of the album is comprised of material like this, Cult Leader refuse to sacrifice the blistering crust punk sounds they're more known for. This doesn't always come as sheer speed though, as "Share My Pain" brings all of the violent energy you could ask for through a gnarly down-tempo beatdown.
While Lightless Walk was fairly straight to the point in its hostility, A Patient Man provides a more nuanced look at Cult Leader. There's plenty of material to bang your head to on this record, but the band offer some moments of peace amongst the chaos and show their sound will evolve and improve with time. (Deathwish Inc.)