Lamb Of God are back with Omens; another fine slice of heavy metal from the veteran Virginian rockers.
Release Date: 7th October 2022
Label: Nuclear Blast Records
Formats: CD / LP / Digital
Nine albums in and Richmond, Virginia natives Lamb Of God show their ever-increasing consistency. “If anybody paying attention to the state of the world over the last few years isn’t angry, I have nothing to say to them…” Randy Blythe is in scintillating form throughout Omens with this quote setting the tone for Omens. This is music that is pissed off. It gets the blood flowing and for the duration, helps you rail against society in your mind.
Anyone that knows the music of Lamb Of God will know exactly what to expect on Omens. Blythe is impassioned throughout. “There is a war going on inside of me,” he sings on Grayscale. The message is clear. Gomorrah sees the same unwavering passion; “Everything is doomed to fail,” is the cry. Ditch opens with the line “I don’t give a goddamn.” The title suggests the murkiness that lies in wait. Whilst the outlook is bleak, this music is putting into sound what many people feel.
As far as opening trios go; Nevermore, Vanishing and To The Grave really set the agenda for Omens. To The Grave has the trademark riffs that Lamb Of God have become synonymous with. John Campbell’s bass also rattles along perfectly, adding to the sense of dread and decay purported in the lyrics. The title track of the album has one of the most simple and arguably best choruses. It will be a huge crowd pleaser and the song is classic Lamb Of God.
Musically, Lamb Of God are nothing less than superb. Pummelling drums that are so well produced and played it is great just to focus on listening to the talents of Art Cruz; who has taken over the stool from Chris Adler in 2019. Ill Designs is one of many furious numbers that are driven by Cruz. Ill Designs is also notable for a stunning, breakneck guitar solo from lead guitarist Mark Morton. Denial Mechanism is one of the albums many highlights but this ‘two minuter’ is genuinely bludgeoning. You can imagine the ferocity of a live crowd throwing themselves into this one.
Denial Mechanism is placed as the penultimate track on Omens. The blistering pace is offset by the album closer; September Song. It opens up incredibly slowly and builds over time. Whilst it is a little slower in parts, the weight of the track is not to be dismissed. It closes out the album superbly building to another thunderous, thrashy crescendo.
“We’re being marketed and sold falling skies, doom and gloom and all this end-of-days material. That stuff makes wonderful fodder for metal music,’ says Blythe. He is not wrong. Whilst the state of the world is in flux, Lamb Of God have managed to bottle the anger and frustration and put it into forty of the finest minutes of heavy metal you will hear this year.