Pray For Blood
Pray For The Cleansing
Pray For The Flood
Pray For the End of This Wide Awake Nightmare!
So begins track number one "Walk With Me in Hell" from the latest platter from one of the leaders of the new wave of American heavy metal, Lamb of God. Two quick questions came to mind with the release of this new album:
1) Can Lamb of God possibly top their last gem, Ashes of the Wake?
2) Could Lamb of God be the heaviest band since Pantera to explode into the Billboard Top 10 Album Chart?
Well, believe me when I say that the answer to both is a resounding yes. Not only is Sacrament a winner on all levels and possibly more well rounded and enjoyable than Ashes of the Wake, but the CD debuted at #8 on the Billboard Album Chart the first week of its release. Quite an accomplishment for a band that plays a style that fuses thrash, metalcore, and death metal into one seriously heavy brew. So just what does make Sacrament such an accomplishment?
For starters, the production of Machine is top notch, crystal clear, bringing out all the little nuances from the drums and bass, and allowing the guitars plenty of room to breathe while still pummeling you over the head. Randy Blythe's vocals are just as brutal as ever, but with a slight melodic edge. The songs are instantly memorable, with plenty of crushing yet catchy guitar riffs from the twin axe heroes Will Adler and Mark Morton, who prove they can shred with the best of them. Check out their technical yet rampaging licks on the bombastic opener "Walk With Me In Hell" and the killer death metal march of "Again We Rise". If you don't think the spirit of Pantera resides somewhere within this band, then take a listen to "Redneck", sure to be a concert favorite for years to come, complete with some of the grooviest riffs ever and Blythe's "I can do a decent Phil Enselmo" impression. Other blistering cuts include the lethal "Foot to the Throat" (a tune with some deliciously evil sounding guitar riffs), Chris Adler's insane drum patterns on the rampaging "Forgotten (Lost Angels)", or the relentless 80's styled thrash of "Beating on Death's Door", which features plenty of aggressive growls from Blythe and a non-stop assualt of intricate power riffage.
That's it in a nutshell-plenty of brutality, complex & heavy guitar work, angry vocals, deep lyrics, and a nice dose of melody. Sacrament is Lamb of God's crowning achievement...so far. I'm sure there's no shortage of quality music left in the tank for future releases, but for now crank up the volume to 11 and groove to the extreme sounds of one of the year's best metal albums.
1. Walk with Me In Hell
2. Again We Rise
5. Foot to the Throat
7. Blacken The Cursed Sun
8. Forgotten (Lost Angels)
10. More Time to Kill
11. Beating On Deaths Door