Lamb of God Ashes of the Wake

Major label metal is changing at an alarming speed and Lamb of God is clearing the path for the mob that will soon be jumping on the wagon. Stabbing guitars melt into a goofy, prog-rock riff that has a Phil Anselmo rant dubbed overtop in what is no less than a lacklustre introduction to the album’s first single. "Destroy yourself, see who gives a fuck” is only the beginning of childish implications within the songs, not only lyrically, but musically. It’s often quite difficult to distinguish between tracks if only because of the monotonous drumming. It is often painfully simple and Chris Adler’s signature kick-drum tone is no less than infuriating. The only time it improves is when said annoying kick is triggered for a blast, giving the four-four a little pepper. The aggravation doesn’t stop there, as the vocals are agonisingly monotonous and only break when Randy Blythe decides he needs to squeal like a pig. Guitarists Willie Adler and Mark Morton certainly practiced their scales and are definitely capable players, but lack what’s most important: good songwriting. Predictable chug breakdowns are methodically placed and the busier riffs are either tedious finger work or just played really fast. To their credit, it’s easy to discern Lamb of God from everyone else and they’ve accomplished a rare feat: clawing their way out of metal obscurity. (Epic)