Lamb Of God Announces Release Date, Specs For New Burn The Priest Covers LP

Courtesy: Epic Records

Before it was Lamb of God, Lamb of God went by another name — Burn The Priest, and this May, Burn The Priest will mark its 20th anniversary with a new covers album.

LegionXX is scheduled to be released Friday, May 18 via Epic Records.  The 10-song record will features covers of hits from the likes of Cro-Mags, Bad Brains, Big Black, Ministry, Melvins, Quicksand and others.  In anticipation of the album’s release, the band is currently streaming the video for its cover of the album’s lead track, ‘Inherit The Earth,’ originally composed by The Accused, online now here.

The album’s full track listing is noted below.

Legion: XX track listing:
1. Inherit The Earth (originally performed by The Accused)
2. Honey Bucket (originally performed by Melvins)
3. Kerosene (originally performed by Big Black)
4. Kill Yourself (originally performed by S.O.D.)
5. I Against I (originally performed by Bad Brains)
6. Axis Rot (originally performed by Sliang Laos)
7. Jesus Built My Hotrod (originally performed by Ministry)
8. One Voice (originally performed by Agnostic Front)
9. Dine Alone (originally performed by Quicksand)
10. We Gotta Know (originally performed by Cro-Mags)
Audiences might get to hear some of these covers live starting May 10 when Lamb of God hits the road as support for Slayer on that band’s farewell tour.  The band’s current tour schedule is noted below.
LEG ONE
(In addition to support from LAMB OF GOD, Slayer leg one headline dates will also feature support from Anthrax, Behemoth, and Testament.)
 
MAY
10   Valley View Casino Center, San Diego, CA
11   FivePoint Amphitheatre, Irvine, CA SOLD OUT
**12   Fox Theater, Pomona, CA – LAMB OF GOD headliner + Behemoth
13   Papa Murphy’s Park at Cal Expo, Sacramento, CA
16   Pacific Coliseum Vancouver, BC
17   South Okanagan Events Centre, Penticton, BC
19   Big Four, Calgary, AB   SOLD OUT
20   Shaw Conference Centre, Edmonton, AB   SOLD OUT
22   Bell MTS Place, Winnipeg, MB
**23   The District, Sioux Falls, SD – LAMB OF GOD headliner + Behemoth
24   The Armory, Minneapolis, MN   SOLD OUT
25   Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre, Tinley Park, IL
27   Michigan Lottery Amphitheatre at Freedom Hill, Detroit, MI  SOLD OUT
29   Budweiser Stage, Toronto, ON   SOLD OUT
30   Place Bell, Montreal, QC   SOLD OUT
JUNE
1   Mohegan Sun Arena, Uncasville, CT   SOLD OUT
2   PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel, NJ
**3   The Dome at Oakdale, Wallingford, CT – LAMB OF GOD headliner + Behemoth
4   Santander Arena, Reading, PA   SOLD OUT
6   Riverbend Music Center, Cincinnati, OH
7   Blossom Music Center, Cleveland, OH
9   KeyBank Pavilion, Pittsburgh, PA
10   Jiffy Lube Live, Bristow, VA
**11 The Ritz, Raleigh, NC – LAMB OF GOD headliner + Behemoth
12   Veteran’s United Home Loans Amphitheater, Virginia Beach, VA
14   PNC Music Pavilion, Charlotte, NC
15   Orlando Amphitheater, Orlando, FL
16   Montebello Rock Fest, Montebello, QC – FESTIVAL DATE/LAMB OF GOD ONLY
17   Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land, Houston, TX   SOLD OUT
19   The Bomb Factory, Dallas, TX   SOLD OUT
20   Austin360 Amphitheater, Austin, TX
LEG TWO
(In addition to support from LAMB OF GOD, Slayer leg two headline dates will also feature support from Anthrax, Testament, and Napalm Death.)
 
JULY
26   Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion, Gilford, NH
27   Impact Music Festival, Darling’s Waterfront Pavilion, Bangor, ME
29   Northwell Health at Jones Beach, Wantagh, NY
31   The Pavilion at Montage Mountain, Scranton, PA
AUGUST
1   Times Union Center, Albany, NY
3   Darien Lake Performing Arts Center, Darien Lake, NY
4   Lakeview Amphitheater, Syracuse, NY
6   Budweiser Gardens, London, ON
7   Van Andel Arena, Grand Rapids, MI
9   Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre, St. Louis, MO
10   Cellairis Amphitheatre at Lakewood, Atlanta, GA
12   Municipal Auditorium, Nashville, TN
13   Walmart AMP, Rogers, AR
15   Freeman Coliseum, San Antonio, TX
16   The Zoo Amphitheatre, Oklahoma City, OK
18   Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre, Denver, CO
19   USANA Amphitheatre, Salt Lake City, UT
21   Ford Idaho Center Amphitheater, Boise, ID
23   Sunlight Supply Amphitheater, Portland, OR

26   SAP Center, San Jose, CA

Tickets and VIP packages are available online now here.

More information on Lamb of God’s upcoming Burn The Priest covers album is available online along with all of its latest news and more at:

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

‘The Duke’ Is A Solid Second Wave From LOG’s ‘VII: Sturm Und Drang’

Courtesy: Epic Records

Courtesy: Epic Records

This past Friday, Lamb of God released its latest recording its new EP The Duke.  The 5-song recording comes only a year after the release of its most recent album VII: Sturm und Drang (2015).  What’s interesting about this recording is that while it is being marketed as an EP, it comes across more in the style of a single than an EP.  That is due to its overall content.  This is one of its most important elements.  Looking more closely at the record, the studio material featured in its presentation is important to note in its own right.  That will be discussed later.  The live material that is included in the record rounds out its most important elements.  Each element is important in its own right to the EP’s overall presentation. All things considered, The Duke proves to be an enjoyable new effort from Lamb of God.

Lamb of God’s new EP The Duke is an enjoyable new effort from the veteran metal outfit.  Considering the fact that it comes just a little more than a year after the band’s most recent album, 2015’s VII: Sturm Und Drang, it is a little bit of a surprise.  Usually when established bands release such a recording it comes a little bit longer after the acts’ most recent recordings.  That is to tide audiences over until their next record.  Even with this in mind, the record still boasts its own share of positives, beginning with its overall makeup.  The five-song recording is composed of two studio tracks and three live recordings.  The studio tracks sound like leftovers, interestingly enough, from the band’s sessions for its last record.  The live recordings were taken from the band’s most recent tour.  In essence what that mix of material offers the band’s fans is the proverbial best of both worlds.  To that end, it shows why it is such an important part of the recording’s overall presentation.  It is not the only key element to note in examining the record’s overall presentation.  The material itself presents its own importance to the recording’s presentation.

The overall mix of material that is presented in The Duke is in itself key to the recording’s presentation.  That is because it offers the band’s fans the best of both worlds in one setting.  It is just one of the key elements to note in examining the record.  The studio tracks included in the record are important to note, too.  Listeners who are familiar with the band’s body of work will note that the songs – ‘The Duke’ and ‘Culling’ – are both very familiar in terms of their arrangements.  They exhibit the same growth exhibited in VII: Sturm Und Drang.  The latter presents an arrangement that echoes the arrangements composed for the band’s previous records while the prior presents the more melodic hard rock leanings included only in VII: Sturm Und Drang.  Considering that, one can only think that these two songs were likely little more than b-sides that ended up on the proverbial cutting room floor during the sessions for that record.  To that end, it serves as a good continuation of what the band started with VII: Sturm Und Drang and an equally welcome introduction to the band for those listeners who might not be so familiar with the band and its body of work.  Even with its importance it is not the last of the recording’s most important elements.  The live material that is included in the recording is just as important in its own right as the studio material.

The studio material that is featured in The Duke is important in its own right to the record’s presentation.  That is because it serves as a solid reintroduction to the band and an equally solid introduction to the band for those who might be less familiar with the band.  Even as important as it is to the record’s presentation, it is not the last element to note.  The live material that is included alongside the studio material is just as important to the record’s presentation as the record’s studio material.  That is because it gives listeners a glimpse into what makes the band just as popular in a live setting as in the studio.  What’s more all three of the songs featured in this recording – ‘Still Echoes,’ ‘512’ and ‘Engage The Fear Machine’ – all come from VII: Sturm Und Drang.  To that end, not only are audiences able to experience the band live through these songs but they are also getting a dose of the band’s most recent album.  When they are set against the record’s two “new” songs, they make a five song record that is essentially a continuation of VII: Sturm Und Drang, or VII: Sturm Und Drang Part 2.  Considering this, The Duke, while a bit of a surprise release from Lamb of God, is still an enjoyable new offering from Lamb of God.

Lamb of God’s  new EP The Duke is a bit of a surprise from the veteran metal outfit, considering how soon it comes after the release of the band’s latest album.  Even with that in mind, it is still an enjoyable new offering in its own right.  That is because its mix of studio and live material essentially makes it a continuation of VII: Sturm Und Drang.  That is evidenced in the studio material, which sounds like it came right from the sessions for that record, and the live material, which presents a small handful of songs from that album in a live setting.  When they are joined together, the studio tracks and live tracks make the record a record that despite its somewhat surprising release, an enjoyable new offering from the band nonetheless.  It is available now in stores and online.  More information on The Duke is available online now along with all of Lamb of God’s news at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.lamb-of-god.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/lambofgod

Twitter: http://twitter.com/lambofgod

 

 

 

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Verbeuren Named Megadeth’s New Permanent Drummer

Courtesy: Soilwork/Nuclear Blast Records/Adrenaline PR

Courtesy: Soilwork/Nuclear Blast Records/Adrenaline PR

It looks like the Megadeth drummer carouse has finally stopped spinning.

The band has announced that Dirk Verbeuren is the band’s new full-time drummer.  In taking on the new position Verbeuren has stepped down as a member of Soilwork.  In his place drummer Bastian Thusgaard has been tapped to take over drumming duties for the band.  Verbeuren has been performing with Megadeth in recent months, taking the place of Chris Adler (Lamb of God), who had originally filled in after Megadeth’s previous full-time drummer Shawn Drover left the band alongside guitarist Chris Broderick in 2014.  The pair went on to form Act of Defiance with vocalist Henry Derek and bassist Matt Bachand.

Soilwork front man Bjorn “Speed” Strid shared his thoughts on Verbeuren’s departure in a statement released to the press.  He was completely supportive of the decision both on the part of Megadeth and Verbeuren.  “In regards to the statement Megadeth released yesterday, confirming that Dirk will join them as their full-time drummer, I just want to take the time to wish Dirk good luck on this new venture and thank him for 12 great years together,” he said.  “Together we have created a beast of a band and have pushed the limits musically further than we ever could have imagined.”  Strid also made mention of Thusgaard’s new appointment with the band in his statement, noting “Meanwhile, I’m sure many of you have seen us at a festival in Europe this summer with our friend, Bastian Thusgaard filling in on drums and I’m sure we can all agree on what a monster he is. Thank you Bastian, you are absolutely killing it. Check out the remaining festival dates and come see us. We’ll be there. Thank you.”

Verbeuren was just as warm in his thoughts on his time with his now former band mates in his own statement.  He also offered up his thanks to his new band mates, and fellow musicians in making his transition.  “They say the biggest decisions in life are the hardest to make,” he said.  This decision falls under that category. As a drummer I’ve always enjoyed the evolution of my path. The past twelve years with Soilwork have been incredible, a portion of my life I honor with pride. When I was approached to join Megadeth- a childhood dream come true and something I never anticipated. I was beyond excited to even consider the realm of possibility. But truth be told, I couldn’t have rightfully made this step without the support and blessing of my Soilwork family. For that I owe a huge thank you to Bjorn, Sven, David, Sylvain and Markus. You have allowed me to see what lies ahead, and you’re my brothers in metal. Chris Adler, thank you for introducing me to Megadeth and for your encouragement and support. Dave, David and Kiko, I’m thankful for your warm welcome and thrilled to perform and create badass music with you guys. To the fans, this is a new chapter for us; I hope we can enjoy this ride together!”

In regards to what fans have to expect from Soilwork and its sound as it moves ahead Strid had the following to say:   “In the recent years Soilwork have found new ways of expressing ourselves and as much as of a cliché it is, I strongly believe that this is very much of a new era for us and that we still have so much left to say, whether it being with or without Dirk. This band has grown to be quite a metal collective and an institution that paves the way creatively and we hope that you, the fans, can feel the presence and the heart in our music still to this day. Believe me, it’s there. I can assure that you will forever get 100% Soilwork, as long as we release albums. We aim to surprise ourselves and the listeners by constantly developing our sound and songwriting, something I believe we have succeeded in doing and yet remained true to our roots. That is something to be proud of and we are. We appreciate all our loyal fans and are excited that so many of you share our musical vision.”

Soilwork has a string of festival dates currently scheduled for August.  Those live dates will be followed up soon after by a short string of UK dates with Arch Enemy.  It will have one headlining date on that schedule, too.  After that stretch the band will take some time off before launching a South American tour on September 9th in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.  The tour is currently scheduled to run through September 20th in Guadalupe Inn, Mexico.  The band will take off the rest of the year after wrapping that tour and will then go back out on the road for a European tour with Kreator, Sepultura, and Aborted beginning February 1st in Metz, France.  That tour is currently scheduled to run through March 4th in Essen, Germany.  The band’s current live schedule is noted in full below.

 

SOILWORK 2016 International Festivals and Headliners:
8.14.2016 Rasnov, Romania – Rockstadt Extreme Fest
8.19.2016 Dinkelsbuhl, Germany – SummerBreeze Open Air
8.20.2016 Saint-Nolff, France – Motocultor Festival
 
SOILWORK August 2016 UK Tour with ARCH ENEMY:
Tickets available from seetickets.com
 
8.21.2016 Norwich, UK -Waterfront w/ ARCH ENEMY
8.22.2016 Sheffield, UK – Corporation w/ ARCH ENEMY

8.23.2016 Cardiff, UK -Tramshed w/ ARCH ENEMY
8.24.2016 Southampton, UK – Engine Rooms w/ ARCH ENEMY
8.25.2016London, UK – The Underworld (tickets) (headline – NO ARCH ENEMY)
 
SOILWORK in South America:
9.9.2016 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – Treato Odisseia
9.10.2016 Sao Paulo, Brazil – Clash Club
9.11.2016 Curitiba, Brazil – Music Hall
9.13.2016 Buenos Aires, Argentina – Uniclub
9.14.2016 Montevideo, Uruguay – MM Box
9.16.2016 Santiago, Chile – Blondie
9.17.2016 Lima, Peru – The Blood
9.18.2016 Bogota, Columbia – Auditorio Lumiere
9.20.2016 Guadalupe Inn, Mexico – Lunario
 
KREATOR, SEPULTURA, SOILWORK, ABORTED European Tour:
Presented by: EMP, ESP, Meinl, Metal.de, Metal Hammer, Metal + Wine, Metalnews.de, Musix, Nuclear Blast, Peta, Piranha, RTN-Touring, Tätowiermagazin, Visions.
 
2.1.2017 Metz, France – B.A.M.
2.2.2017 Tilburg, Netherlands – 013
2.3.2017 Munich, Germany – Tonhalle
2.4.2017 Hamburg, Germany – Mehr! Theater
2.6.2017 Copenhagen, Denmark – Amager Bio
2.7.2017 Oslo, Norway – Rockefeller
2.10.2017 Helsinki, Finland – Black Box
2.11.2017 Tampere, Finland – Pakkahuone
2.12.2017 Tallinn, Estonia – Rock Cafe
2.13.2017 Vilnius, Lithuania – Siemens Arena
2.15.2017 Warsaw, Poland – Progresja
2.16.2017 Wien, Austria – Gasometer
2.17.2017 Wiesbaden, Germany – Schlachthof
2.18.2017 Berlin, Germany – Columbia-Halle
2.19.2017 Pratteln, Switzerland – Z 7
2.21.2017 Trezzo, Italy – Live Club
2.22.2017 Grenoble, France – Summum
2.23.2017 Barcelona, Spain – Razzmatazz
2.24.2017 Madrid, Spain – Riviera
2.25.2017 Toulouse, France – Bikini
2.26.2017 Paris, France – Bataclan
2.28.2017 Manchester, UK – Academy
3.1.2017 Dublin, Ireland – Vicar Street
3.2.2017 London, Uk – O2 Forum
3.3.2017 Balen, Belgium – Torhout
3.4.2017 Essen, Germany – Grugahalle

Death Resonance, Soilwork’s new compilation record, will be released Friday, August 19th via Nuclear Blast Records.  Audiences can pre-order the record online now here.  Audiences can also order the band’s most recent album The Ride Majestic online on CD, vinyl, and digital formats.  While ordering the band’s new music audiences can also check out the videos for a pair of songs from The Ride Majestic—‘Death in General,’ and ‘Enemies in Fidelity’—online, too.  The album’s title track is streaming online, too via YouTube.

More information on Soilwork’s upcoming tour dates, music, and more is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.soilwork.org

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/soilwork

Twitter: http://twitter.com/soilwork

 

 

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Rock On The Range Sells Out For Fourth Straight Year

Rock-on-the-Range-logo

Courtesy: AEG Live/Danny Wimmer Presents/Ashton-Magnuson Media

The annual Rock on the Range festival has done it again.

For the fourth consecutive year the Rock on the Range festival has officially sold out. This year’s mark is especially important for the festival as it marks the festival’s 10th anniversary. Last year 120,000 people from all across America and the world bought every last ticket to the three-day festival. This year’s festival will be another three-day event, running from May 20th – 22nd. It will take place at the MAPFRE Stadium in Columbus, Ohio. The lineup for this year’s festival includes: Red Hot Chili Peppers, Disturbed, Rob Zombie, Deftones, Shinedown, Five Finger Death Punch, Bring Me The Horizon, A Day To Remember, Megadeth, At The Drive-In, Lamb Of God, Sixx:A.M., Hellyeah, and Pennywise, as well as a number of up-and-coming acts.

Along with some of the rock and metal community’s biggest names and biggest names of their next generation, the Rock on the Range Festival will also feature some of the most well-known and respected comedians out there today. They include: Big Jay Oakerson, Nate Bargatze, Craig Gass, Bethany Dwyer, Madison Malloy and Grammy®–nominated comedian Jay Mohr in the Rock on the Range Rolling Rock Comedy Tent. There will even be a craft beer village featuring the top breweries from the region, new art installations, and activities special to the festival among so much more. ROTR co-executive producer Danny Wimmer discussed the sellout and what it says not only of the festival but of rock and metal as well in a recent interview. “Anyone who says, ‘Rock is Dead,’ hasn’t paid attention to Rock On The Range,” he said. “This festival has grown in each one of its 10 years, selling out in record time this year. Rock On The Range’s strength stands as a testament that rock fans are not only alive and well, they are flourishing.”

Whether or not audiences will be headed to the annual festival they can still get all of the latest information on the festival including performance times and more via its new mobile app. The app is free and can be downloaded via iTunes and Google Play.

Rock on the Range is produced by Danny Wimmer Presents, AEG Live, and MAPFRE Stadium. It is sponsored by Monster Energy, Jack Daniel’s, Zippo, The Music Experience, and Bud Light. More information on the Rock on the Range festival is available online along with all of its latest news at:

 

Website: http://www.RockOnTheRange.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/rockontherange

Twitter: http://twitter.com/rockontherange

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Fans Get Another Glimpse Into Anthrax’s Latest LP In New BTS Video

Courtesy:  Megaforce Records

Courtesy: Megaforce Records

Anthrax is giving fans another glimpse into its upcoming album For All Kings.

The veteran hard rock outfit debuted its first official radio single ‘Breathing Lightning’ today. In celebration of its release, the band has also released another behind-the-scenes video, this one presenting a discussion on the song in question. Guitarist Scott Ian notes in the new video that the song was actually inspired by none other than author Stephen King, and that (for those that might not know) it is not the first Anthrax song to ever be influenced by the seminal writer. Charlie Benante opens the discussion noting that ‘Breathing Lightning’ is, in his view, “the accessible song on the record.” It makes sense that he would feel that way in hearing the song, which plays throughout the course of the video. Stylistically speaking it bears a similarity to music from both Megadeth and Metallica’s more mainstream material at least to a point. Audiences can hear the whole discussion for themselves now online via YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hgMl5q0FXxE&feature=youtu.be.

Anthrax Breathing Lightning Video Screenshot

Courtesy:  Megaforce Records

Courtesy: Megaforce Records

‘Breathing Lightning’ will be available at independent retailers nationwide beginning Friday, January 15th along with ‘Evil Twin.’ The songs will be available as a download card that will be included in a special customized, limited edition deck of Anthrax poker cards. The card will also allow fans to download For All Kings online on February 26th, the album’s release date.

Also on January 15th, Anthrax will hit the road alongside Lamb of God in support of its new record. The currently nineteen-date tour kicks off in Pittsburgh, PA and ends in Los Angeles, CA on Friday, February 12th. The band’s current tour schedule is noted below.

 

JANUARY

15   Stage AE, Pittsburgh, PA

16   Electric Factory, Philadelphia, PA

17   The Fillmore, Silver Spring, MD

19   Tabernacle, Atlanta, GA

22   Constant Convocation Center, Norfolk, VA

23   Hammerstein Ballroom, New York, NY

24   Oakdale Theatre, Wallingford, CT

28   Royal Oak Music Theatre, Royal Oak, MI

29   Egyptian Room at Old National Center, Indianapolis, IN

30   Aragon Ballroom, Chicago, IL

31   Orbit Room, Grand Rapids, MI

FEBRUARY

2   Arvest Bank Theatre at The Midland, Kansas City, MO

4   Revention Music Center, Houston, TX

5   Bomb Factory, Dallas, TX

6   Concrete Street Pavilion, Corpus Christi, TX

8   ACL Live at the Moody Theatre, Austin, TX

9   Diamond Ballroom, Oklahoma City, OK

11  Brooklyn Bowl, Las Vegas, NV

12  Hollywood Palladium, Los Angeles, CA

 

 

More information on Anthrax’s upcoming album and tour is available online now along with all of the latest Anthrax news at:

 

Website: http://anthrax.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/anthrax

Twitter: http://twitter.com/anthrax

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Slayer Reclaims The Metal Throne In 2015

There’s only a week and a half left in 2015 after this week. That means that the days are finally really ticking away. And as they pass by so do the year-ender lists from all of the critics. That includes this critic. So far this month, Phil’s Picks has revealed its top new EPs, World Music albums, County, etc. albums, Rap and Hip-Hop albums, Children’s albums, and Rock albums. There have even been lists for the year’s best new live CD recording and album re-issues. Now we come down to the last two lists of the music universe for this year. Today the first of those lists will be revealed. That list is the list of the year’s best new Hard Rock and Heavy Metal albums. The second and final music list of the year is the year’s best overall albums. That list will come alongside the list of the year’s top new movies later on. So for now, today brings the last of the music year-enders. And it’s quite a doozy. It was anything but easy to assemble. Slayer grabbed the top spot with its new album Repentless. Saxon is there, too as is Annihilator, Gloomball, Between The Buried and Me, and many others. As with every previous list, the Top 10 albums make up the main body of the list. The bottom five are each honorable mention as they simply could not be ignored. That brings the total list to fifteen albums. SO without further ado, here for your reading pleasure, dear readers, are the Phil’s Picks 2015 Top 10 New Hard Rock and Heavy Metal Albums.

 

PHIL’S PICKS 2015 TOP 10 NEW HARD ROCK/METAL ALBUMS

  1. SLAYERREPENTLESS

 

  1. TESSERACT – POLARIS

 

  1. SCALE THE SUMMIT – V

 

  1. BETWEEN THE BURIED AND ME – COMA ECLIPTIC

 

  1. SEVENDUST – KILL THE FLAW

 

  1. GLOOMBALL – THE QUIET MONSTER

 

  1. ARMORED SAINT – WIN HANDS DOWN

 

  1. SAXON – BATTERING RAM

 

  1. LAMB OF GOD – VII: STURM UND DRANG

 

  1. MOTORHEAD – BAD MAGIC

 

  1. ANNIHILATOR – SUICIDE SOCIETY

 

  1. ATREYU – LONG LIVE

 

  1. ACT OF DEFIANCE – BIRTH AND THE BURIAL

 

  1. BATTLECROSS – RISE TO POWER

 

  1. HAMMERCULT – BUILT FOR WAR

 

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Lamb Of God Takes No Prisoners As It Storms This Year’s Hard Rock And Metal Field

Courtesy:  Epic Records

Courtesy: Epic Records

It’s official. Lamb of God is back. The veteran metal band, which was once tapped as part of the so-called New Wave of American Heavy Metal, released its latest full-length studio effort on July 24th. The album, the band’s seventh, is one that almost didn’t happen. That is because of front man Randy Blythe’s 2012 court case stemming from the death of one of the band’s fans in 2010 at one of the band’s live shows in Prague. Blythe faced the possibility of spending quite a bit of time behind bars as a result of the fan’s death as he was implicated in sad fan’s death. Thankfully that didn’t happen. And because it didn’t fans now have an album in VII: Sturm Und Drang that is both one of the band’s best albums to date and that is one of the best of this year’s hard rock and metal albums. The record is anchored by the trademark musical and lyrical intensity that the band’s fans have come to know so well over the years as is evident in ‘#512’ and ‘Engage The Fear Machine.’ Though, for its familiar sound and feel, the band does throw a proverbial wrench in the works, branching out slightly in regards to its musical content in ‘Overlord.’ All three songs show in their own way that Lamb of God is indeed back. They are hardly the only songs that could be cited in making that argument. The standard edition features seven other songs that could just as easily be used for that argument. The deluxe extended edition no fewer than nine other tracks as fodder for that argument as it includes a pair of bonus recordings. All things considered, VII: Sturm Und Drang (storm and penetrated, roughly translated) proves both in its standard and deluxe editions to be an album that is, again, one of Lamb of God’s best recordings yet and one of this year’s best new hard rock and metal recordings.

Lamb of God’s latest full-length album VII: Sturm Und Drang is one of the band’s best recordings to date and one of the best of this year’s crop of new hard rock and metal albums. It is an especially welcome recording from one of the members of the so-called New Wave of American Heavy Metal considering that it almost didn’t happen. From beginning to end, fans will note the band’s trademark musical and lyrical intensity in every song including one of its highest moments, ‘#512.’ Considering the song’s lyrical content, one can’t help but think that it must be one of the two songs included in this record that were centered on the case in question. He writes in the song, “Six bars laid across the sky/Four empty walls to fill the time/One careless word, you lose your life/A grave new world awaits inside.” He goes on to write in the song’s chorus, “My hands are painted red/My future’s painted black/I can’t recognize myself/I’ve become someone else/My hands are painted red” The content contained in the song’s second and third verse strengthens the argument even more that this song is referencing the events of Blythe’s case. Both verses, when coupled with the intensity of the song’s musical content, illustrates the emotion that Blythe must have felt when he originally wrote this song. That is, again, if the song is indeed making reference to the case.

Regardless of whether or not #512 is indeed making reference to Randy Blythe’s case stemming from the death of one of LOG’s fans some five years ago, it is still one of the best moments of this already outstanding return for one of metal’s top acts. It is hardly the only positive that can be taken from the band’s new album. ‘Engage The Fear Machine’ is yet another positive from this outstanding work. Coming from a musical vantage point, ‘Engage The Fear Machine’ shows another familiar sound. The band’s technical expertise in this death metal style song. Drummer Chris Adler’s time keeping is without flaw. Mark Morton and Will Adler are just as tight together in the song’s dual-part approach to the songs. And the fire in Blythe’s voice as he screams will remind long-time fans just as much of the band’s previous works. Speaking in terms of the song’s lyrical content, the song hits just as hard as Blythe comments on the steady stream of fear, death, and destruction being fed to Americans from the media and other sources. He screams, “Here we go again/The world is coming to an end/Engage the fear machine and collect the dividends/That’s it, you filthy monkeys/Keep your eyes on the bright and shiny/Just for you/A brand new-and-improved catastrophe/Pure-bred Pavlov/Prime time apocalypse/Hit the panic button and reap the bloody benefits.” This is made even clearer as he screams in the song’s closing verse, “Stream the latest threat from the limelight economists/Fabricated peri from contagion to communists/Fear delivered to your door by racketeers and strategists/Another advertisement war sold by the media terrorists.” If there was any doubt before, then that doubt is completely eliminated here. The fear machine is the media. It is politicians. It is everybody in any sense of power that willingly drives people into submission through the use of fear. That reminder to not give in to the fear machine set alongside the song’s familiar powerhouse musical content makes even clearer why this song is one of the best of the band’s new album. While it is another of the album’s best moments, it is not the last of said moments. ‘Overlord’ is one of the album’s representative singles and justifiably so. It is yet another of the album’s most notable works.

‘#512’ and ‘Engage The Fear Machine’ are both key additions to Lamb of God’s new album. Both songs harken back to the band’s previous albums with their musical content. The songs’ lyrical content will impress just as much with their hard-hitting and thought-provoking lyrical content. While both songs show in their own way to be key additions to VII: Sturm Und Drang they are just a small collective glimpse into what makes this record such a welcome return for Lamb of God. The album’s latest single ‘Overlord’ is one more example of what makes this record a welcome return. It is perhaps the single most notable of the album’s songs because it is such a drastic departure for the band. The band’s signature speed and ferocity are both there. However, listeners are treated to more than just that familiar sound. The song starts out with a much slower hybrid Crowbar/Alice in Chains sort of sound that runs nearly three and a half minutes into the song’s six and a half-minute run time. Throughout that initial run, audiences actually get to hear for themselves that the band’s members can in fact do more than just play really fast and really loud. All five men show that they can play in a slow, controlled fashion just as much as they can fast and loud. Even Blythe’s vocals have a different sound in that run. It’s an interesting change of pace overall. It is just part of what makes this song such an interesting addition to the record, too. The song’s lyrical content, written by Blythe add even more interest. Blythe noted in an interview that lyrically speaking, the song is a commentary about how the world’s people have become completely self-obsessed and that the end result of that obsession can only be bad. He notes of the song that, “I wrote the song about the dangers of self-obsession in our distressingly myopic and increasingly entitled “me-now/now-me” culture; just like the couple in the video, many people can’t seem to look past their own relatively small problems to see the bigger picture: the world is in serious trouble. Having a bad day at work, or a fight with your significant other, or getting a crappy haircut or table service does not in any way shape or form constitute an emergency. Sometimes things just don’t work out the way we want them to deal with it. People who only see their own problems eventually wind up alone because no one wants to hear their crap anymore- we all know someone like that, always whining and complaining about some inconsequential setback as if it were the apocalypse. This song is for those people.” That statement is made clear as he screams, “A new time of declaration of distress/Strife, misery, and the pursuit of unhappiness/Endless complaining/No accountability/No reek of privilege and weightless tragedy.” It is made even clearer as he screams later in the song, “All the world’s a stage/But you are the only player/A black hole in the center of the universe/A dark cloud of despair/Caught in an endless rut/A Crisis without solution/Someone should stitch your mouth shut/And solve your f***ing problem.” This is a rather sharp indictment of those people. But again, everybody knows someone like the individual(s) noted here. That being the case, the fire in these words along with Blythe’s delivery style and the musical approach of his band mates combine to make ‘Overlord’ one of the album’s strongest songs if not the single strongest songs. Audiences can check out the song for themselves now along with its companion video via YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RNRsvFsY9qk. Together with the likes of ‘#512’ and ‘Engage The Fear Machine’ all three songs show together clearly why VII: Sturm Und Drang is a welcome return for Lamb of God. Those songs combined with the remaining tracks not noted here result in an album that is justifiably one of the best of this year’s hard rock and metal crop.

VII: Sturm Und Drang shows from beginning to end to be a welcome return for Lamb of God. Audiences will agree that regardless of whether they pick up the deluxe twelve-track edition or the standard ten-track record, it proves to be one of the best of this year’s crop of new hard rock and metal albums. This is thanks both to the musical talent displayed time and again throughout the body of the record and the commentary contained within each of the album’s songs. Whether for one of the tracks noted here or for any of the many others that could just as easily be noted, fans will agree that this applies in every one of the album’s songs. VII: Sturm Und Drang is available now in stores and online. The band is currently touring in support of the new record. It will be in Boston, MA tomorrow, August 4th and then in Holmdel, New Jersey on Wednesday. The band’s current tour schedule is listed below.

NORTH AMERICAN TOUR:

LAMB OF GOD W/ Slipknot, Bullet For My Valentine & Motionless In White

8/4 – Boston, MA @ XFINITY Center

8/5 – Holmdel, NJ @ PNC Bank Arts Center

8/6 – Pittsburgh, PA @ First Niagara Pavilion

8/8 – Toronto, ON @ Molson Canadian Amphitheatre

8/9 – Montreal, QC @ Parc Jean-Drapeau – Heavy Montreal

8/11 – Washington, DC @ Jiffy Lube Live

8/12 – Virginia Beach, VA @ Farm Bureau Live at Virginia Beach

8/14 – Indianapolis, IN @ Klipsch Music Center

8/15 – Chicago, IL @ First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre

8/16 – St. Louis, MO @ Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre

8/19 – Denver, CO @ Red Rocks Amphitheatre

8/21 – Salt Lake City, UT @ USANA Amphitheatre

8/22 – Garden City, ID @ Revolution Center – NO SLIPKNOT *New Show*

8/23 – Auburn, WA @ White River Amphitheater

8/24 – Vancouver, BC @ Rogers Arena

8/26 – Concord, CA @ Concord Pavilion

8/28 – Las Vegas, NV @ MGM Resort Festival Grounds

8/29 – Phoenix, AZ @ AK-Chin Pavilion

8/30 – Albuquerque, NM @ Isleta Amphitheater

9/2 – Austin, TX @ Austin360 Amphitheater

9/4 – Houston, TX @ The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion

9/5 – Dallas, TX @ Gexa Energy Pavilion

More information on Lamb of God’s tour is available online along with all of the latest updates on its new album and all of the latest news from the band at:

Website: http://www.lamb-of-god.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/lambofgod

Twitter: http://twitter.com/lambofgod

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