One of the most important things we will learn from this album is that anger and aggression are clearly human emotions that may never take a break because straight from opening intro track Straight For the Sun with it's dwindling doom-ish structure and the subsequent first proper song Desolation with it's violent thrashy shredding from Willie Adler are effortless in serving listeners a constant characteristic of very pure and unrefined rage. The deep and deathly screeching of Randy Blythe says it all. And of course Blythe's lyrics condemning liars, cheats and those with personalities spiteful. It's seen on The Number Six, where Blythe calls out:
"You've dug your own grave with your spite/ You've dug your own grave lie by lie/ A cancer that needs to be cut out/ Sweet slander the razor to your throat/ Trim the fat"
Of course, it goes without saying that such brutal and violent lyrics are nothing without a musical backdrop to go with it and Lamb of God are just the band to provide an excellent soundtrack to such aggression. The Number Six in particular has an excellent performance, being full on the kind of pounding in depth pounding breakdowns that made it's way onto 2006's Sacrament but without the kind of glossy sheen that messed up the band's reputation for a while. However, the sound of 2009's Wrath and 2004's Ashes of the Wake is much more present here, with Blythe's more melodic screeching being present on tracks like Invictus and To the End. While tracks like Invictus and Terminally Unique deliver Lamb of God's breakdown filled metalcore element, it's tracks like Guilty and The Undertow which instead present listeners with a more intense and sterile thrash metal section, where the rapid axe shredding of Willie Adler and Mark Morton contains the power to blow listeners away. Of course all songs here have the power to make listeners want to smash their heads off other people's faces and thus breaking them.
So, needless to say, Resolution is classic Lamb of God. Brash, aggressive, pounding, take-no-prisoners heavy metal. While there's little variation on this, it's difficult to imagine any fan who would want anything more than that. However, if you are looking for something different from the band, listening to this album in it's entirety is worth it alone to hear the album's closer King Me.
With it's acoustic, spoken sections and it's monolithic riff-fest backed up by a strings section and opera singer, King Me is Lamb of God's most atmospheric song and beautiful song and simply it is epic beyond belief.
So, now that Lamb of God have a definitive sound, Resolution is a perfect chance for the group to demonstrate it to a kind of depth and brutality like never before, which shows a real mix that of all that has made them so great over their vast career. This is the first metal album of 2012 I've listened to and it has the serious potential to be the best.
Lamb of God's Resolution is out now via Roadrunner. The band will perform at the Download Festival at Donnington Park on the 11th of June.