Hearing Aide: Lost Breed ‘Speak No Evil’

2020 was a year (mostly) devoid of live music, and you’d expect that it should have been full of new music, right?  Not as much as you’d think, I’ve found, but this heavy release from Lost Breed, which snuck out near the end of that year of plague, conflict, division and staying-at-home, was a nice surprise.

Lost Breed is a band with New York roots.  They arose from the ashes of Albany/Colonie-area metal band Blind Legion, who had released a killer 7” single (“Nice Guys Finish Last” b/w “Used to be Blind”) in the mid-80s, along with a couple of key, Sabbath-meets-NWOBHM demos before disbanding (since released officially by Portugese label Blood & Iron records as ‘Much Too Fast –  The Anthology 83/86’). 

Most of the ex-members moved out west and formed Lost Breed in Van Nuys, California, initially with Blind Legion vocalist Gary Tocco, later with doom-metal legend Scott “Wino” Weinrich (of the Obsessed, St. Vitus, Spirit Caravan, The Hidden Hand, etc.), before the band settled on west-coast vocalist Pat Lydon, with the band filled out with ex-Blind Legion New Yorkers Eric “Ike” Baestlein (guitar) and Vinnie Augustine (bass), and L.A. native Jamie Silver drumming.  The band released some mighty, Sabbathy, doom-metal albums on German label Hellhound in the 90s (‘Save Yourself’, ‘The Evil In You & Me’), before the band became more of a part-time affair, when the New York half moved back east. 

Until now: in late 2020, out of nowhere, this new record by Lost Breed dropped, somehow created mid-pandemic with half the band (Vinnie and Ike) here in Upstate NY, the other half out west.  This is a doom-marinated blast of creeping heaviness, features singers from two eras of the band, and absolutely is worth hunting down. 

Side 1 features the legend Wino back on vocals (and lead guitar – he also did the swirlingly evil back-cover painting) for the first time since the late 80s, Side 2 features “classic” LB vocalist Pat Lydon singing.  Both sides are gloriously, stomping hefty, dragging you down to the depths with crushing heaviness, where tentacled things crawl, as if weighted by lead.  Each vinyl side features 4 tracks, and Side 1 (“Wino”) would please both fans of vintage Lost Breed, and Wino’s great bands such as the D.C.-area legends The Obsessed, or the 80s doom-metal deities St. Vitus, “Cradle to the Grave” and the perfectly-titled “Doom” being standouts  

Oddly, as legendary as Wino is and as much as I love every single thing the guy has done, the Side 2 Lydon-sung songs might be even better, especially “Siren Song” and the apocalyptically heavy “Stalker.”  Churning, crawling, leaden riffs and ripping Baestlein solos lurk throughout Side 2), both vocalists howl with mournful authority, top-notch doom on both sides, soaked in Sabbathy goodness – a  killer release.

Buy the album on Ebay.

Key tracks: “Cradle to the Grave”, “Doom”, “Siren Song”, “Stalker”

lost breed