Wrath (Lamb of God album)

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Wrath
Studio album by Lamb of God
Released February 23, 2009
Recorded 2008
Genre Groove metal, thrash metal[1]
Length 44:43
Label Epic, Roadrunner
Producer Josh Wilbur
Lamb of God chronology
Sacrament
(2006)
Wrath
(2009)
Resolution
(2012)
Singles from Wrath
  1. "Set to Fail"
    Released: January 14, 2009

Wrath is the sixth studio album by American groove metal band Lamb of God. It was released on February 23, 2009. It achieved number 2 on Billboard 200, with sales exceeding 68,000 in the U.S. during its first week of release.[2][3] As of 2010 it has sold over 202,000 copies in the United States.[4]

Background and production[edit]

In August, 2008, it was announced that the band had commenced work on the follow-up to Sacrament, and that it was expected to be released on February 24, 2009. Josh Wilbur was confirmed as the producer for the album. Wilbur takes the place of the band's previous producer, Machine, who worked with them on Ashes of the Wake and Sacrament.

The recording process of Wrath was made available for online viewing through the band's website, with two webcams installed in the studio (specifically in the drum room and mixing room).[5]

A producer version of the album with 4 split tracks per song (vocals, guitars, bass, drums) is available on the Deluxe Producer Edition Bonus CD (2009) allowing people to analyse and remix the individual elements of the album.

Music and album direction[edit]

Speaking about the record, drummer Chris Adler stated:

"This album is going to surprise a lot of people. Typically bands that get to where we are in our career begin to slack off, smell the roses and regurgitate. We chose a different path. No one wants to hear another band member hyping a new record. ‘Wrath’ needs no hype. We have topped ourselves and on February 24 you will feel it."

"We are excited to be changing things up this time and working with Josh. We've never stayed in one place too long, and the Band's evolution continues. There is an aggressive shift in the material and our approach. The bar has been raised."[6]

Guitarist Mark Morton was also quoted in an interview stating:

"We usually try to do something fresh every time. This one, I think, is deliberately a little more raw and more aggressive than 'Sacrament' was. 'Sacrament' was a really, really dynamic record on every level, and the songs were all over the place — it was also heavily produced. This one's really raw and real-sounding, from every angle, and we're celebrating imperfections on this record. We're choosing what takes stay on the record based more on their character and personality than how completely mechanically precise they are. It's more about vibe and attitude in the takes than it is about, 'Wow, that was perfect.' It's the perfect ones that get thrown away, because they're just too sterile."

"The guitar tones are a little cleaner than normal," he added. "We're kind of getting into this mind-set that clean is heavy. Clarity is a lot heavier than oversaturated. It's just real raw and natural and organic-sounding, which, in itself, is kind of revolutionary these days, when kids are making pro audio-sounding recordings in their dorm rooms, on their laptops, and cutting and pasting verses and choruses. It's no longer cutting edge to make a completely space-aged, robotic-sounding record. I think it's almost fresh now to make one that sounds like an actual band played it. Don't get me wrong — it still sounds airtight and rehearsed, because it is all those things. But it's just real."[7]

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 74/100[8]
Review scores
Source Rating
About.com 4.5/5 stars[9]
AllMusic 3/5 stars[10]
The A.V. Club A[11]
Blabbermouth.net 8.5/10 [12]
Consequence of Sound 4/5 stars[13]
Entertainment Weekly B+[14]
Kerrang! 4/5 stars[15]
Los Angeles Times 2.5/4 stars[16]
NME 8/10[17]
PopMatters 6/10[18]
Rock Sound 9/10[19]
Rolling Stone 2/5 stars[20]
Slant Magazine 4/5 stars[21]

Initial critical response to Wrath was positive. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album has received an average score of 74, based on 14 reviews.[8]

The Los Angeles Times stated:

On its new album, Wrath, the Virginia band roots its best songs in a Motörhead swagger that makes the growly moments stickier and gives the stadium-sized choruses a hint of righteous evil.[16]

IGN gave it an 8 out of 10 and stated:

The highlight of Wrath, however, is the band's technical prowess, which is omnipresent. And Blythe leads the charge valiantly, with a passel of angry proclamations. While Lamb of God doesn't exactly reinvent the wheel this time out, this is an impressive album—meaning it should be taken as a whole, cohesive listening experience. That's the best way of soaking up all the nuances and subtleties that make Lamb of God a standout American-metal band.[22]

Spin gave it a six out of ten and stated:

The latest outburst of controlled aggression from these veteran Virginia metallurgists proves that consistency is a blessing and a curse. As always, the palm-muted jackhammer riffs and Randy Blythe's elastic denunciations of liars, hypocrites, and lying hypocrites are frightfully precise. [...] But primally satisfying as it is, the band's meat-and-taters thrash leaves one hungry for some Mastodon-style lateral thinking. Or not.[8][23]

AllMusic has given it mixed comments, stating:

There's no denying the sheer "angry basement workout/summer garage weightlifting" potential that Wrath's perfectly acceptable 45-minute running time offers, but without a single hook that sticks around long enough to reel in the fish, all you've got is bait.[10]

Rolling Stone also gave a little negative review on it, saying:

On their sixth album, Wrath, the fearsome fivesome opt for a somewhat varied but hardly visionary attack mode, occasionally lurching into a groove or tune. The song titles betray a cynicism over military and religious affairs, but growl-to-screech front-monster Randy Blythe never makes his anger coherent [...] Wrath opens and closes with spans of placid subtlety — a welcome touch that doesn't make up for all the raging roteness in between.[20]

Blabbermouth.net has stated:

Despite Grammy nods, being hand-picked as direct support for Metallica, album sales out the ass and other invasions into the mainstream, Lamb of God haven't lightened up one damn bit. In fact, Wrath is nowhere near the over-produced product of a major label success story many of us were waiting for. Nope, Wrath is one raw, vicious and relentless mother fucker; the proverbial snarling beast that has finally broken from its cage and is out for blood...Thankfully, Lamb of God has yet to reach that point where they feel the need to re-invent the wheel, or even themselves for that matter. Since Ashes of the Wake, this has been a band who are very comfortable in their own shoes and will continue to wear them with pride as they kick the shit out of all of us.[12]

About.com gave positive reviews on the album by stating:

The album closer "Reclamation" also starts acoustically before taking the listener on a 7 minute trip through various tempos, intensities and vocal styles. Wrath may not have a signature single like "Redneck" from their last CD Sacrament, but overall it's just as powerful and potent.[9]

Awards[edit]

In 2010, Lamb of God was nominated for a Grammy, at the 52nd Grammy Awards, for "Set To Fail" in the Best Metal Performance category, but lost out to Judas Priest's "Dissident Aggressor".[24] In 2011, the band was nominated for a Grammy, at the 53rd Grammy Awards, for "In Your Words" in the Best Metal Performance category, but lost to Iron Maiden's "El Dorado".[25]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Lamb of God

No. Title Length
1. "The Passing"   1:58
2. "In Your Words"   5:25
3. "Set to Fail"   3:46
4. "Contractor"   3:22
5. "Fake Messiah"   4:34
6. "Grace"   3:55
7. "Broken Hands"   3:53
8. "Dead Seeds"   3:41
9. "Everything to Nothing"   3:50
10. "Choke Sermon"   3:21
11. "Reclamation"   7:07
Total length:
44:43
UK and Japanese special edition bonus tracks
No. Title Length
12. "We Die Alone"   4:37
13. "Shoulder of Your God"   5:52
14. "Condemn the Hive"   3:41

Personnel[edit]

Lamb of God[edit]

Additional personnel[edit]

Charts[edit]

Chart (2009) Peak
position[26]
Australian ARIA Albums Chart 8
Austrian Albums Chart 53
Belgian Albums Chart 80
Dutch GfK Albums Chart 52
Finnish Albums Chart 5
Japanese Albums Chart 59[27]
New Zealand RIANZ Albums Chart 14
Swedish Albums Chart 35
Swiss Albums Chart 56
UK Albums Chart 25
U.S. Billboard 200 2[2]
U.S. Billboard Comprehensive Albums 2[28]
U.S. Billboard European Top 100 Albums 41[29]
U.S. Billboard Tastemakers 1[2]
U.S. Billboard Top Canadian Albums 1[2]
U.S. Billboard Top Digital Albums 2[2]
U.S. Billboard Top Hard Rock Albums 1[2]
U.S. Billboard Top Internet Albums 2[2]
U.S. Billboard Top Rock Albums 1[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Lamb Of God Wrath Review". allmusic.com. Retrieved 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h "Wrath - Lamb of God". Billboard. Retrieved 2012-03-28. 
  3. ^ "LAMB OF GOD's 'Wrath' Lands At No. 2 On BILLBOARD Chart!". Blabbermouth.net. Retrieved 2012-03-28. 
  4. ^ "Week Ending Aug. 1, 2010: The Downloading Of Eminem - Chart Watch". New.music.yahoo.com. 2010-08-04. Retrieved 2011-08-13. 
  5. ^ "Lamb Of God get all Big Brother". Kerrang. 2008-09-11. Retrieved 2008-09-11. 
  6. ^ "Lamb Of God News: The Wrath Of Lamb Of God!". Idiomag.com. Retrieved 2011-08-13. 
  7. ^ "BLABBERMOUTH.NET - LAMB OF GOD Guitarist Says New Album Is 'More Raw And Aggressive' Than 'Sacrament'". Roadrunnerrecords.com. Retrieved 2011-08-13. 
  8. ^ a b c "Critic Reviews for Wrath". Metacritic. CNET Networks, Inc. Retrieved 2009-04-07. 
  9. ^ a b Bowar, Chad. "Wrath - Lamb of God". About.com. Retrieved 2012-03-03. 
  10. ^ a b Monger, James. "Wrath - Lamb of God". AllMusic. Retrieved 2012-03-03. 
  11. ^ Burgess, Aaron (2009-02-24). "Lamb Of God: Wrath". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 2012-03-28. 
  12. ^ a b Ogle, Ryan. "Lamb of God: Wrath (Epic)". Blabbermouth.net. Retrieved 2011-08-13. 
  13. ^ Buchanan, David (2009-03-02). "Album Review: Lamb Of God – Wrath". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved 2012-03-28. 
  14. ^ Bruno, Mike (2009-02-18). "Wrath Review". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2012-06-23. 
  15. ^ "Lamb of God Are a Band Firmly on Top of Their Game". Roadrunner Records. 2009-02-13. Retrieved 2012-03-03. 
  16. ^ a b Brown, August (2009-02-23). "Album review: Lamb of God's 'Wrath'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2012-03-03. 
  17. ^ Martin, Dan (2009-02-23). "Album Review: Lamb Of God - Wrath". NME. Retrieved 2012-03-28. 
  18. ^ Begrand, Adrien (2009-02-24). "Lamb of God: Wrath". PopMatters. Retrieved 2012-03-28. 
  19. ^ Kerswell, Ronnie (2009-02-24). "Wrath - Lamb of God". Rock Sound. Retrieved 2012-03-03. 
  20. ^ a b Eddy, Chuck (2009-02-19). "Lamb Of God: Wrath : Music Reviews". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on 2009-03-15. Retrieved 2012-11-15. 
  21. ^ Boland, Casey (2009-03-02). "Wrath - Lamb of God". Slant Magazine. Retrieved 2012-03-03. 
  22. ^ Kaz, Jim (2009-02-27). "Lamb of God - Wrath". IGN. Retrieved 2012-03-03. 
  23. ^ Marchese, David (2009-02-14). "Lamb of God, 'Wrath' (Epic)". Spin. Retrieved 2012-11-15. 
  24. ^ "JUDAS PRIEST Wins GRAMMY For 'Best Metal Performance'". Blabbermouth.net. 2010-01-31. Retrieved 2012-04-28. 
  25. ^ "IRON MAIDEN Wins 'Best Metal Performance' GRAMMY For 'El Dorado'". Blabbermouth.net. 2011-02-13. Retrieved 2012-05-03. 
  26. ^ "Wrath chart performance". Ultratop (in Dutch). GfK. Retrieved March 3, 2009. 
  27. ^ "ラム・オブ・ゴッドのCDアルバムランキング、ラム・オブ・ゴッドのプロフィールならオリコン芸能人事典-ORICON STYLE" (in Japanese). aOricon.co.jp. Retrieved 2014-01-01. 
  28. ^ "European Top 100 Albums". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media. March 14, 2009. Retrieved March 13, 2009. [dead link]
  29. ^ "Billboard Comprehensive Albums". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media. March 14, 2009. Retrieved March 13, 2009. [dead link]