Lamb Of God headline defenders of the faith
Firstly I would like to point out that this show took place on Valentines day, but as none of the bands acknowledged the fact it cannot be classed as an anti-valentines show but the lack of hearts and anything red in the sea of black was admittedly quite refreshing. The scene outside of the O2 Brixton academy was one of calm, the only reminder that hundreds of metal fans had been here just minutes before were the piles of rubbish being shovelled by street workers.
The Lamb of God rugs where ceremoniously laid out on the stage as the restless fans, eager for one final assault on their eardrums, waited in anticipation. Chris Adler’s drum kit stands centre stage flanked on either side by four Mesa Boogie stack amps. Blue lights illuminate the stage, as the sound check comes to a close. The venue is filled with the sound of helicopters, radio interference and a woman’s voice, which becomes barely audible over the screams that have just erupted from the audience as firstly Chris Adler walks onto the stage closely followed by, his brother, Will Adler and guitarist Mark Morton. Once the crowd are suitably warmed up, we are eventually blessed with the presence of Randy Blythe.
Over the noise of the crowd, Randy’s introductions of the first song are lost, not being a die hard Lamb of God fan I couldn’t tell you what it was, but it was certainly met with great vigor. They followed their energetic opening with ‘Laid To Rest’, which Mark Morton opened with a beautiful solo on his custom Mark Morton Jackson, as the audience were asked to put their middle fingers up in the air.
As Unearth had mentioned earlier in the night, this was a night of four very different types of metal bands converging to give their fans what they wanted; total heavy metal destruction. This was echoed by Randy as he declared that the only reason they had come back to the UK was to “Fuck this place up”, before dedicating ‘Walk With Me In Hell’ to everyone who had come to see them. The band provided a solid backing to the growling tone of Randy’s voice.
At this point I think Randy is among the few warm people in the venue, as he throws his jumper into the crowd, a move he might later regret, as it is a bitterly cold London night. The audience are then treated to a live preview of ‘Set To Fail’ from their new album ‘Wrath”, which is out February 24th. For many of the Lamb of God fans here tonight this is not the first time they are hearing this track, because shortly before the band set out on this tour they recorded the video, which they subsequently leaked onto YouTube.
After the band finish playing ‘Descending’ with which they ended with a triumphant “Fuck Yeah” from Randy, he goes on to reflect on what it means to him to look out over the hundreds of people who have turned out and life itself, “It does my heart a whole lot of good to see you here, because your supporting independent music. Some people might think your stupid for listening to this type of music, but you’re not you’re smart”. The audience don’t even wait for the words to pass Randy’s lips before; a chant of ‘Now You’ve Got Something To Die For’ fills the auditorium. The guitar solo, mid song, is reminiscent of that of ‘Raining Blood’ by Slayer. He then goes on to stand centre stage with his finger pressed to his lips, the audience are slow to catch on but finally the noise dies down to a silence.
They go on to play three more songs before the finale, including ‘Thy Will Be Done’, another new track ’Contractor’ which was dedicated to a 12 year old from the US who had flown over to attend his first metal gig. And to the crowds immense pleasure ‘Rednecks’ at which point my view was obscured by the numerous fans that had risen to their feet on hearing the opening chords, This is when I decided to take my exit.
All in all it was a great show not just from Lamb of God but from all the bands on the tour, while there is a limit to how much heavy metal a girl can endure in one night, what can I say? I look forward to seeing Lamb of God play again in the very near future.