Miami-based alt-rock outfit Lochness Monster will drop their second EP, Working for a Future, on February 3, via Venemusic. The EP includes three brand-new tracks, along with an alternative version of “Pendulum.”
Talking about the EP, guitarist/songwriter Justin Shaner says, “We pushed ourselves more during the songwriting process on this release and made sure we tried every avenue possible until the song sounded its best in a live environment. We didn’t put any time constraints on ourselves we just wanted to put out songs that we felt were at their best before we entered the studio phase and even in the studio, there wasn’t a lot of adding extra layers to the song but more of an emphasis on presenting the song in its true form. The vibe I get from this release is it’s authentically us but hard to classify into a genre, and each song is like the yin to the others yang.”
While vocalist Bruce Donaldson adds, “The journey we took working on this collection of music is one that has been challenging and rewarding for me in many different ways. It gave me an opportunity to express emotions and feelings from my life in a way that I feel others can connect with their own journey through life. I have found a new sense of patience working through the creative and recording process, in part due to external complications in the world, but mostly through spending time finding what it is I need to say in my art as opposed to just what I want to say. My intention is that people find a message of hope and perseverance in the melodies and lyrics and also that they can find themselves in the story. I hope they can let go for a moment…and breathe out.”
In addition to Shaner and Donaldson, the final two members of Lochness Monster are Rene Rivera (drums), and Federico Carradini (bass).
Formed in 2015 by Shaner, Lochness Monster released their debut album, Fables, in 2016. Recorded by producer James Paul Wisner, who has worked with Dashboard Confessional, Paramore, and Underoath, the album realized vast radio play, hitting the number 16 spot on CMJ’s charts, where it remained for several months.
In 2018, the band laid down tracks for their self-titled EP, again with Wisner at the helm, featuring “Calling Out” and “Farewell Past.” The latter was selected by Launch Pad Live Top 20 Countdown as one of the best top songs of 2021.
From 2019 to 2021, Lochness Monster was back in the studio, working on their second EP, Working for a Future. Because of the pandemic, the band utilized creative ways to record and mix. Along with a more stripped-down sound, the band self-produced the new material at Rain Cat Recordings and Bull Productions. Despite the obstacles, the band was determined to get the music just right.
The EP begins with “Glass Jar,” opening on atmospheric prog-rock flavors flowing into low-slung gleaming guitars topped by Donaldson’s vividly luminous voice. “Running Away” travels on soft guitars rolling into a measured rhythm supporting Donaldson’s vocals. Then the guitars take on escalating heft before descending once again.
A personal favorite, “Atlas” features glistening guitars riding delicious percussion. The feel and flow of the harmonics is both moderately alluring and potent. As the guitars take on chunking savors, the tune assumes superb layering.
The final track, “Pendulum,” rolls out on Queensryche-like textures rife with latent urgency. The guitars ramp up, infusing the harmonics with lustrous, heavy leitmotifs. Donaldson’s high tenor imbues the lyrics with dreamy, wistful coloration.
With Working for a Future, Lochness Monster delivers wickedly lavish tiers of plush music, all capped by the excellent vocals of Bruce Donaldson.