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lambofgod st
Artist: Lamb of God
Title: Lamb of God
Genre: Groove Metal / Thrash Metal
Release Date: 19th June 2020
Label: Nuclear Blast


Album Review

LAMB OF GOD seemed to be ready for a new era. After the release of ‘VII: Sturm Und Drang’ the band took the time to celebrate their 20th anniversary with the cover album ‘Legion: XX’, which was released under the name BURN THE PRIEST. The album contains exclusively cover versions of bands that have inspired LAMB OF GOD significantly, such as THE MELVINS, S.O.D. or THE BAD BRAINS. In the meantime, the band's iconic drummer, Chris Adler, has left the band. The young Art Cruz, 32 years old, has replaced him, proving his long-time commitment to the band. These five years of reflection and diverse experiences, coupled with the first line-up change since 1999, inspired LAMB OF GOD to start a new cycle with their eighth album, simply titled ‘Lamb of God’. The opportunity to demonstrate their renewed energy and willingness to take on new challenges, reinforced by the enthusiasm of the newcomer behind the drums.

The half-spoken intro to ‘Memento Mori’, always crossed by admonishing children’s whispers, gives an atmospheric introduction to the new work before it inspires the listener to head-bang with full force. Immediately afterwards, the first release of the album ‘Checkmate’ follows. With quite political lyrics and the line “Make America hate again” (which made me grin as a THY ART IS MURDER die-hard fan) that really catches the attention, they aggressively presented personal views on modern world events that are the result of political activity. Now, at the latest, the listener realizes that LAMB OF GOD has remained 110% true to themselves: no experiments, just the finest groove metal! Is this bad? Not at all.

The stomping ‘New Colossal Hate’ with its brute chorus gets stuck in the listener’s ear in an instant. There’s not much bells and whistles on the album. The highest of feelings is made by a weird music box melody, rain sounds and an etched “Bläääh” by Randy in ‘Ressurection Man’. But ‘Poison Dream’ is an absolute highlight. This song is enhanced by the participation of Jamey Jasta (HATEBREED, KINGS OF SORROW) as a supplement to Randy Blythe’s growling. TESTAMENT’s Chuck Billy’s performance on ‘Routes’ is less anecdotal and offers a real contrast in tone and phrasing to Randy. The SEPULTURA-style finale of ‘Routes’ with drums has a new look for LAMB OF GOD, a rare occurrence which is fair enough to be mentioned. This is also the fastest and trashiest song on the album. Tail light of the new work is ‘On The Hook’. This quite rightly secures its place as album closer. First the band lets everything flow, scolds all the hypocrites and then stomps on it once again. “Kill them all!” Yes, that would probably be the best solution...

Despite the maximum bangs, it’s not at all difficult to find numerous barbs and to quickly become familiar with the material. Every song has at least one scene, where a mighty wall of death is building up in front of your inner eye or a brutally bolting pit is getting hot. This is not least because of Blythe’s nagging, which continues to make him one of the best of the genre. And also, the change of the drums is not that noticeable. Art Cruz rattles his double bass just as soberly and cool and mercilessly as once Adler. Heralding a new era by wallowing in his comfort zone is a special approach that sums up the ambiguity of LAMB OF GOD. The band shines in its role and will inspire purists as much as those who have a punctual need for a well-arranged release. And if you take a look across the news of the last two weeks, LAMB OF GOD will already have enough topics for their next record.


Tracklist

01. Memento Mori
02. Checkmate
03. Gears
04. Reality Bath
05. New Colossal Hate
06. Resurrection Man
07. Poison Dream (feat. Jamey Jasta)
08. Routes (feat. Chuck Billy)
09. Bloodshot Eyes
10. On The Hook


Line-up

D. Randall Blythe – Vocals
Mark Morton – Guitar
Willie Adler – Guitar
John Campbell – Bass
Art Cruz – Drums


Website

www.lamb-of-god.com


Cover Picture

lambofgod st


Rating

Music: 9
Sound: 9
Total: 9 / 10




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