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Lamb Of God Resolution

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Lamb Of God - Resolution
01. Straight for the Sun
02. Desolation
03. Ghost Walking
04. Guilty
05. The Undertow
06. The Number Six
07. Barbarosa
08. Invictus
09. Cheated
10. Insurrection
11. Terminally Unique
12. To The End
13. Visitation
14. King Me
2012 Epic Records

OUR SCORE
7
USER SCORE
5

Reviewed by: Joshua   //   Published: 1/19/2012

Once a band has established their "sound" it becomes harder and harder to surprise listeners without offending the die-hard fanbase. Resolution, Lamb of God's sixth full-length (seventh if you count Burn the Priest), will surely do both as the Richmond, VA quintet extends their heavy metal reach into more progressive and melodic territory.

Instead of exploding out of the gate, Resolution slops forward with "Straight for the Sun," the slowest LoG track in recent memory. Opening the album with a sludge song is the first of many startling moments on the disc. At only two minutes long it's also one of the shortest moments and could have lingered a little longer. Things kick into high gear on the follow-up, "Desolation." This is vintage Lamb of God. The flawlessly airtight riffage of guitarists Mark Morton and Willie Adler is on full display. A requisite offbeat groove-heavy breakdown should satiate fans dissuaded by the slow rolling intro. These tunes are a perfect back-to-back punch to begin an LoG record.

It's one step forward and two steps back on the following jams. Lead single "Ghost Walking" has a brief acoustic intro and swampy blues vibe that's exciting at first, but the southern swag ala "Redneck" feels forced and singer Randy Blythe's fatalistic lyrics, i.e. "there's no one left to save" are bit trite. The preceding track "Guilty" fails with a similar formula. While it's long been overtly obvious that Lamb of God is the heir to Pantera's southern metal style, it'd be nice not to be reminded of it at almost every turn.

The boys hit their stride when they let loose on "The Undertow" and "Cheated." Both songs feature fast and furious guitar interplay and on the latter, a ripping solo. The huge chorus on "The Undertow" is made for stadium sized audiences and will surely be seen on stage very soon. Drummer Chris Adler is so good it's almost expected, but he still manages to ramp up the BPMs with fills as crisp as ever.

The real conversation piece of Resolution is the trilogy of "progressive" songs: "The Number Six," "Insurrection," and "King Me." "The Number Six" features a swinging discord of a verse and a tuneful, yet still aggressive chorus. Bassist John Campbell gets a chance to be heard for the first time in what seems like forever as the song swerves into a weird walking bass lick before morphing back into the slugging beast it began as. "Insurrection" is also textured, heavy, and hooky. These steps in a new-ish direction are a welcome experiment in expanding the traditional Lamb of God sound. Many may cry out in horror, but it isn't uncharted territory for LoG, just not oft explored. Similarities can be drawn to "Descending" from Sacrament or "Reclamation" on Wrath, but bigger. The band is obviously trying to stretch out a bit. Perhaps a bit too far, because LoG really swings for the fences on album-ender "King Me." It features spoken word, opera singing and even a string section! Unfortunately it falls just shy of the ball field warning track. While ambitious and avant-garde, "King Me" comes off as disjointed and over-produced.

With standout songs like "Desolation," "The Undertow," and "Cheated" alongside the great progressive works "The Number Six" and "Insurrection," as well as other noteworthy numbers "Invictus" and "Visitation," Resolution comes out ahead. Add to that a few studio sound bites, like Randy gulping air before screaming and the count-offs that kickoff a couple songs, the listener feels like they are part of the studio experience. For the die-hards these are fun Easter eggs. In the end, a few too many filler tracks full of rehashed southern swing mar what might have been a great album front to back.

Bottom Line: It's Lamb of God. If you don't like them already Resolution won't change your mind, but longtime fans will be pleased with the majority of the album even if a few tunes are a touch lackluster.

Comments
anonymous   posted 8/12/2012 4:45:31 PM
I have to say, I have been a fan for about ten years, started with the song Black Label, and have fallowed since, the new album is awesome, Lamb of God in my opinion, the boys never disapoint, I hope they never stop and contine to make awesome music!
anonymous   posted 4/4/2012 8:17:32 AM
it's bullshit how they got a 7 out of 10 this is at the very most a 3 and i'm being generous this album sucks me sideways
anonymous   posted 3/3/2012 8:30:41 PM
nickel back metal of god
Snoopy2   posted 3/2/2012 12:29:57 PM
Holy f*cking worst shit int he world
anonymous   posted 2/21/2012 4:46:53 AM
It was all worth it once I heard "the undertow"

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