Living With Lions – Make Your Mark – Review

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Release Date: July 21st, 2009
Record Label: Adeline Records
Genre: Punk

Making their start in the fine landmass of Canada, Living With Lions has already had time to get used to being signed and living the heavy tour life. In Canada they are currently signed to Black box and recently have opened a deal with Adeline Records for U.S. representation, but their new record “Make Your Mark” has already made its rounds in America’s hat erm Canada. Now with a home found, Living With Lions can now have their American fans able to buy a record without having to buy [Import] and spend tons of money. It may surprise and excite some people to know that universal health care isn’t the only good thing that those Canucks got right, Living With Lions is a close second.

Filled with no delusions, Living With Lions is a DIY punk band that doesn’t take many stances or causes, and instead makes music based off of personal experiences. “Make Your Mark,” being their first full-length, had a lot to prove for them as a band. Could they separate themselves enough to get recognition, while making music that could appeal to a large audience? The answer is an easy, yes. Living With Lions’ preoccupation is with having a good night, having good friends, and the like, so they shape their music around that. If you are looking for a good time, “Make Your Mark” has all the catchy and energetic punk that you could ever wish for. It also feels like a call back to years back when music wasn’t always just recognized for being otherworldly and deep, and was liked instead for communicated a relating message through anthem vocals and melodic punk. I miss those days, as not many bands are able to get away with making a record like “Make Your Mark,” as people are often afraid to relax and enjoy the music that may sound similar (Daggermouth, Fireworks, This Time Next Year, etc) but still implores that touching side of punk.

Musically, having another guitar really adds depth to Living With Lions‘ sound. Where one guitar limits the amount of riff complexity you can have with a punk band, this record shows what a duo of simple and melodic guitars can add to your chemistry. Shayne’s basslines stream along with relative ease and really form the structure for all the other instruments. Matt’s vocals are done in true Rise Against fashion and can be rough to the point of annoyance in parts, but I can’t picture Living With Lions‘ sound without him so it’s a love hate relationship.

After several listens though, “Make Your Mark” has really done just that. It has made its mark on me and has me looping Living With Lions many times over. Good natured punk rock with more involved melody has a way of taking over your thoughts and forcing you to mimic drumming motions, as you move to its catchy and fun-loving pace. ~Staff

Score: 4/5

Track Listing:
1. She’s A Hack
2. Wrong Place, Right Time
3. A Bottle Of Charades
4. Granny Steps
5. My Dilemma
6. Cold Coffee
7. Hotel: Part Seven
8. Coolin With Costa
9. Park It Out Back
10. Dude Manor
11. Outro

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