Having stormed the world in 2000 with the bands first major release New American Gospel and followed by 2003 release The Palaces Burn, in 2004 this monumental band released the first album on a major label and with that bought the additional pressure of being marketed widely and crossing over from the underground scene to a more mainstream market, whilst trying to retain the energy and aggression that the band had wowed the underground scene with. This was a pivotal moment in the bands history and the Richmond based band absolutely nailed it.
This album brought groove laden aggression, heavy riffs and moshing possibilities to the masses as the crushing tracks just kept on coming through this 11 track monster that really paved the way for many modern mental bands to infiltrate the mainstream market whilst retaining their underground feel and sound.
By the time ‘Laid to Rest’, ‘Hourglass’ and ‘Now You’ve Got Something To Die For’ have set the scene perfectly ‘The Faded Line’ blasts into the speakers and keeps the juggernaut rolling forward, completely crushing everything in its path
This re-release boasts 4 additional tracks to the original release, one B side in ‘Another Nail For Your Coffin’ which is an incredible track, displaying the full force of the unique vocal by the inspirational Randy Blythe as those incredible drum sounds are provided by Chris Adler, Mark Morton And Willie Adler provide the guitar solos and rhythm and John Campbell produces the groove based bass guitar that the rest of the tracks are built upon and around.
The other tracks are pre-production demos of ‘Laid To Rest’, ‘Ashes Of The Wake’ and ‘Remorse For The Dead’ where the raw aggression that is bottled into the tracks sounds in some ways its best. The chugging brilliance behind Randy and the passion of the vocal really come to the fore as the realest sounds that the band create are capture in their demo greatest.
It is no secret that since this release there have been trying times for the band, including the chapter which saw the arrest of Randy Blythe and subsequent 30 days in a Prague jail and lead to his ultimate acquittal, however this release is a celebration of one of the most important albums in music and proved to the world that Metal was a genuine force to be reckoned with and opened doors, not just for Lamb of God to go onto to huge success including five Grammy Nominations and Platinum records but also other bands to retain that rawness and underground authenticity whilst also providing for the mass market.
This album crushed 15 years ago and still sounds as good as it did in 2004, if anything going back and listening to it again helps you realise just how good an album Ashes Of The Wake is and really gets me excited for the Download Festival appearance and the follow up to the incredible VII: Sturm Und Drang.
Ashes Of The Wake is released May 3rd 2019 via Music For Nations.
Ashes Of The Wake – 15th Anniversary Edition vinyl track listing
- Laid to Rest
- Now You’ve Got Something To Die For
- The Faded Line
- Blood Of The Scribe
- One Gun
- Break You
- What I’ve Become.
- Ashes of the Wake
- Remorse Is for the Dead
- Another Nail For Your Coffin
- Laid To Rest (pre-production demo)
- Ashes Of The Wake (pre-production demo)
- Remorse For The Dead (pre-production demo)