As I Lay Dying front man Tim Lambesis was released from prison last December after spending roughly two years behind bars for his 2013 plot to have his then wife, Meggan Lambesis, murdered. Last night he broke his silence for the first time since his release with a lengthy apology on Facebook. Continue reading →
Christian Metal is a marginalised genre at the best of times. Is it all a marketing ploy? Hardcore is a good medium for faith-based metal. It’s easy to convey the passion you have, and they have that in spades, but recent claims from As I Lay Dying frontman Tim Lambesis that “maybe one in ten Christian bands” are genuine have not done the scene any favours. Sleeping Giant seem to mean it though. Finished People (Century Media) is the fourth album from the trio (Tom Green – Vocals, Geoff Brouillette – Guitar, Matt Weir – Drums).
Opener ‘Clutches’ builds from a slow start to a high octane crusher; Green doesn’t take long to start singing about spreading Christian love, but his vocal range is impressive nonetheless and he maintains a positive vibe throughout. Repeated breakdowns are to be expected and are delivered on a regular basis and as is often the case, their constant appearances can become fatiguing. But there are also melodic passages on the likes of ‘Overthrow’ or ‘Finished People’ reminiscent of Jamey Jasta’s solo album as well as thrashy elements on ‘Death Knell’ and ‘Brother’s Keeper.’
Overall there’s a good balance between the usual hardcore genre expectations and melody, but there’s plenty of bite in their sound. ‘Son of God, Son of Man’ is a highlight, as are ‘Christus Victor’ and ‘Victory.’ However there are plenty of overly generic, anonymous moments where it’s mostly shouting and breakdowns. The only outright bad song is ‘Violence’; an overblown and pretentious spoken word passage.
Whether they “mean it” or not, Sleeping Giant have made a respectable album full of energy and zeal with a positive message. They’ve also made an album lacking any new ideas and occasionally straying into pretentiousness or generic breakdowns. There a lot worse albums out there, but it’s a decent effort.
Just when you thought there was nowhere else to go, Austrian Death Machine; the Arnold Schwarzenegger themed band deliver the most beefiest and powerful sounding release to date. They cover everything from Red Sonja to the “maid incident”. From the crushing ‘I’ll Be Back’ all he way to the frenzied ‘It’s Turbo Time’, the production on here makes me wish all albums sounded this full. With the unfortunate situation Tim Lambesis finds himself in, this is likely the last new music from him we will get to enjoy for a while.
As always Lambesis handles the main vocals and a majority of the guitars. He’s damn fine guitarist and his voice just drives this beast. Just naming all the guests vocalist and guitarists on here would fill the review. A few stand out tracks belong to guitarists Doc Coyle on ‘Crom, Grant Me One Request’, and Mark MacDonald on ‘Chill Out Dickwad’ with his theme from The Terminator infused solo. A few of the vocal attacks come from Hatebreed main-man, Jamie Jasta ‘One More Rep’ and Lorenzo Antonucci of Sworn Enemy fame on ‘Pumping and Humping’ Besides the monstrous list of guest guitarists, the real highlight is the rhythm section of Brandon Trahan of Impending Doom and Joe Gericke of Death by Stereo. They are down right thunderous sons of bitches who aren’t pushing any pencils. They need to work together more. My personal favorites are the blast filled ‘I Hope You Left Room in Your Stomach For My Fist’ and ‘I Know Now Why You Cry’.
Oh what a fun ride this album is! Lambesis and company clearly having a blast and it can be heard. They make you want to spend the day watching movies, while working out. I look forward to seeing what they do with the newer Arnold movies someday.