Virginia's Lamb Of God are back with their fifth album, and after listening to it, the title seems to be fitting rather well. Lamb Of God comes from what many refer to as the New Wave Of American Heavy Metal, and also from what could be called metal-core. Personally I feel more comfortable with labelling them as thrash metal, if I have to put a label on them. Thrash flavoured with a genre of your choice that has an ending with the word core, what the hell, lets call Lamb Of God's metal Thrash-core. I am not so fond of placing bands in certain genres, but let's face it; it is a tremendous help when you are to describe a band.
The opening "opus" The Passing is just a two-minute intro, but it sets the tone by being mighty and slow in the guitar work and it has a melody that directs your mind towards the old Metallica, or even better, Machine Head. Lamb Of God brings out a raw sound on Wrath, and the album itself appears to be more brutal and not as dynamic or melodic as its precursor Sacrament from 2006.
In Your Words, that really unleashes the album, brings forth some sheer aggression that is representative for the album, which is also very well displayed in Contractor. Vocalist Randy Blythe is not the most melodic or varied singer, or screamer, for that matter, but his guttural conviction is more than enough to bring this home, and as I find similarities to Pantera in the music I find even more similarities between the two vocalists in question.
I simply love the determined and completely insane drumming from Chris Adler. His fierce attacks on the drums and the way they sound is nothing but splendid, as with Fake Messiah that starts furiously, and it is those parts that I probably enjoy the most of this album.
One downside that I feel with Lamb Of God, as with many other bands living in the same neighbourhood, is that it can become too much of the "core" elements than what I like, and further that it can easily become monotonous. Even if monotonous is not the word to describe the Mastodon inspired track Reclamation, it however feels as a journey that is leading nowhere considering its length.
A track well worthy of mentioning is Grace, that can be compared to the sound of Machine Head and also of the same might they can possess. It also displays how damn well the guitarists Mark Morton and Willie Adler are doing in the melodic department, while in Choke Sermon they deliver a groove that completely runs you over.
All in all, Lamb Of God is no more than just another band among many others to me. Still a damn good one, though, but not one that is leading the race or raising the bar in any way as I see it. If the songs in general are all good and hold a high level you don't feel the need for a powerful stand out song, but here I miss something in the vein of Redneck from Sacrament, as this album would need one when the rest of the songs don't entirely carry Wrath all the way home.