No one quite does multi-media bundles as well as Nuclear Blast does. Made with love and attention to detail, it always seems that they have the fans in mind when putting together a bundle. The most recent of which is ‘Live In Richmond, VA’ the brand new live album from Lamb Of God. The backbone of ‘Live In Richmond, VA’ is 2020’s self-titled album (their first new album in five years) which is played in its entirety alongside six bonus tracks, all performed by the band during one of their successful, critically acclaimed live streams.
‘Live In Richmond, VA’ is available to enjoy via whichever platform and format you use to consume your music today. If digital streaming is your bag, then fear not, for you have not been forgotten about as the live album has been bundled with the original studio release as a deluxe version. Although one look at the incredible physical products and you might just change your preferences; especially the red splatter white vinyl (Nuclear Blast store exclusive), or black splatter flesh pink vinyl (Lamb Of God store exclusive). Wax not your thing? Then check out the triple-disc set that features the original album, the live album, and the live DVD. EU/UK residents can also opt for the 2-disc CD/DVD combo. Whatever you want, Lamb Of God and Nuclear Blast have you covered.
Unable to tour in support of the ‘Lamb Of God’ album, this live stream marks the first opportunity for Randy Blythe, John Campbell, Mark Morton, Willie Adler, and the most recent addition to the LoG family; new drummer Art Cruz, to blast these tracks out in as close to a normal live gig as it can get given the current predicament that the live music circuit faces. The band feels their way through the foreboding early strains of opening track ‘Memento Mori’ and when Blythe screams “WAKE UP” it signals an explosion of noise as months of pent-up frustration begin to crumble away. The riffage is sharp as hell, and the guitar work between Morton and Adler is immense, one hell of a partnership, special mention to the killer trippy guitar doodles on the opening of ‘Checkmate’. Bassist John Campbell has formed a great connection with new drummer Art Cruz and the amount of work that the pair gets through on the opening salvo is incredible, a feat made all the more eye-opening considering that Cruz only joined the year before the world went to shit and chances of performing together have been few and far between. Listen out for Campbell’s smooth as silk Geezer Butler-like intro on the hypnotic ‘Reality Bath’. The intense energy that the band produces in this situation is phenomenal, none more so than Randy Blythe who puts in a performance that rolls back the years. To keep up such levels of intensity when the hands of time are ticking away is a testament to his commitment and professionalism.
The creepy as hell ‘Resurrection Man’ is one of the highlights of the ‘Lamb Of God’ album, and it becomes even more creepier in this live setting; with the atmospheric guitar tones thrilling throughout. When the final strains of ‘On The Hook’ fade out, the fun really begins with encore time and the bonus tracks. Blythe utters..” This is a punk rock song; it’s called ‘Contractor’”, and it’s the LoG equivalent of Russell Crowe telling his legions in Gladiator “…on my signal, unleash hell…”. It kicks off a furious twenty minutes or so which continue with ‘Ruin’ (killer guitar solos and Blythe instructing those watching at home to “Destroy your fucking house”), ‘The Death of Us’ from the ‘Bill & Ted Face The Music’ movie (“…a brand new one written and recorded in quarantine, it’s for our dear friends Bill & Ted”), a crushing ‘512’ ends the set with Blythe joking (or not) “feel free to destroy your living room, smash your mother’s best china…”.
A lesson in brutality, and further proof, if required, of the importance, and continued relevance of Lamb Of God.
Available now via Nuclear Blast, more information here.