Review – Lamb of God – As the Palaces Burn

2003’s “As The Palaces Burn” is a prime example of LOG’s raw energy and powerful sound. The album is a frantic yet orderly collection of driving riffs, astounding tempos, and those distinctly groovy phrases that we know and love about Lamb of God. This album is a decent modern thrash attack, although sadly ends up a little lacking in consistency.

Sound – Lamb of God have developed a very raw and cutting tone for this album. ATPB is full of heavy chugging riffs that contrast with some brief spurts of melody by guitarists Mark Morton and Willie Adler. All riffs are headbangable at their respective paces, and all the notes feel very tight as they are interwoven with drummer Chris Adler’s blisteringly fast double kick pedals. Bassist John Campbell is not as loud although he still provides very decent low end support each song. Chris Adler’s drumming is amazing on this album; the drum fill before the bridge of “Ruin” is a great example of his talent and capability as a leading drummer in modern metal. Finally, Randy Blythe’s vocals provide the icing on this delicious cake of an album. His delivery is harsh and refined, showing a good range from very low to medium pitches with his raspy growl. 8/10

Lyrics

The lyrics on this album confront whole bunch of themes and issues, and some songs can be read as a brutally honest social commentary. In the title track, lyricist Randy Blythe takes a swipe at corporate America – and points out the hypocrisy of a government that sought peace through violent means. Other songs explore mental instability and various topics such as addiction,  loneliness and violence. There’s a lot of content here and  Blythe riddles his writing with interesting metaphors and other cleverly allusions to keep things interesting. Lyrically ATPB culminates as a thoughtful and confronting package. The harshness of the lyrics complements the overall tone of the album and fits well with the music. 8/10

Impression

Lamb of God’s 3rd album is a very solid effort and is definitely worth a listen. I would not say this is LoG’s best album, although it is still worth checking out as it contains a number of powerful grooves and awesome riffs, with an undeniable energy. Fans will recognize this record as a significant chapter in the evolution of a band that would become a heavy metal juggernaut. It marks a special point where LoG began to find their signature sound and emerged as a force to be rekonned with.

Produced by Devin Townshend of Strapping Young Lad.

8/10

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