Year : 2004
Genre : Groove Metal
Label : Epic
Origin : United States
Rating : 6.5 / 10
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Lamb of God has all the chance in the whole wide world to emerge victorious when the fabric of the Universe organizes the annual Who Has the Most Notable Pantera Influence Embedded in Thy Souls? contest.
There is nothing wrong at all with being influenced by Pantera, a band reigning beyond doubt as one of the most influential forces that, to this day, define the field contemporary metal tends to present itself upon. The only thing you really want to give this Lamb of God - Ashes of the Wake affair a spin for, is the bitter chance you will have at listening how the T-Rex of Pantera sounds with its balls miniaturized. Wait. Are you SURE you want to hear that? Okay, read on then.
Ashes of the Wake, for a start, AND for a precisely aimed conclusion, at least submits to its own aspirations, and delivers the everyday average Pantera cloning as solidly as the band could in 2004. The face of groove metal is not a face that necessarily has to depend on intricacy to sell its raw charisma : it simply needs to depend on the sole weight and/or catch of the groove, and there seems to be a difference between individual grooves with autonomous rhythms being shot at your direction, and grooves that have organic connections and common feelings that they playfully circulate between each other. Lamb of God doubtless knows how to deliver a relatively solid groove, yet their readiness and urge to make the grooves flirt with each other, so you have no chance but to scrutinize their fun closely, sounds to be modest on this 2004 effort.
The sections tend to get thrown away rather easily, without them being given the attention their rhythmic and sonic structures do sound to exhibit. Instead of taking a pattern apart to see what actually is inside, the band hastily brings another build out of thin air. The vocalist sometimes addresses the depths of his Pantera influences by giving away two or three lines in a narrative fashion, as Philip Anselmo likes to do. The vocalist's speaking voice packs way less drama and charisma than Anselmo's, but the he probably has managed to eradicate his own capacity to notice this evident potentiality of reality. Connection between the patterns, sometimes DOES get established on the spin, and those are the moments the LP is at its top form - but these moments are relatively scarce to come by, and the basic character of the spin remains that of a diligent presentation of doubtless muscular groove metal loops the band developed during the production, yet loops that exhibit mild organic connection with any other.
As just hinted above, the LP sounds to have a clumsy tendency of mistaking the abrupt termination of a solid direction for flamboyant variation. The intensity has a hard time reaching moments you must remember or rewind to, - there ARE such moments, though - regardless how the band ventures into metalcore territory on occasions, just to resonate some miserable fake fry screams you can laugh a round male-ass off. The performance of the vocalist is probably the most disappointing contribution of this spin. He sounds to have a rather time, and general wisdom suggests that as soon as it is hard for you, then it will be no fun to you, and probably it won't be fun to listen to, either. The vocalist tries to get the job done, but trying is way less than sufficient when you can subject yourself to legit vocal performances you can hear from number 1 real deal screamers like Pantera's Phil Anselmo or Slipknot's Corey Taylor.
From a musical point of view, - without the vocal contribution, that lacks notable unique character beyond its over-abused aspiration to imitate Anselmo - this is a decently produced, prolonged sequence of quite acceptable Pantera tribute, but, as with most tributes, this one, too, lacks the promise of a chance of approximating its mighty inspirator. In 2004, Lamb of God had no capacity to offer anything else of-, or sufficient enough of what its definer, Pantera delivered as a timeless navigational beacon of metal. Ashes of the Wake is not a bad album, it simply is an effort at cloning its own robust ideal.
Rating : 6.5 / 10
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