The stage was set, Brixton Academy was absolutely heaving and as soon as Chris Adler came on stage to blitz through the drum section leading into Desolation the crowd opened up into complete bedlam. Immediately it was clear that this was a Lamb Of God bang on form. As with so many Lamb Of God tunes, the two opening songs tonight Desolation and Ghost Walking have this heavier, more sinister edge to their versions on record. If anyone needed reminding why this band are at the very top in metal at the moment then as the set rolled on they would have had a rude awakening. Randy Blythe addressed early on the missing Mark Morton on guitar due to important family commitments, but his replacement tonight Paul Waggoner from Between The Buried And Me put in a more than worthy performance, nailing all the riffs and solos and perhaps most importantly not affecting the brilliantly tight cooperation with Willie Adler and the rest of the band.
All of the crowd favourites were part of the set, Walk With Me In Hell and Set To Fail sounding as brutal and good as ever. One of the most bone crunching heavy moments of the set was the band's performance of Omerta. This was before Randy Blythe made reference to the anniversary and re-master of As The Palaces Burn as they kicked into the savage Ruin. Surprisingly this and Vigil were the only two tracks they covered from the album despite its huge exposure at the moment. If the sound during Decapitated suffered slightly, the same couldn't be said for Lamb Of God who from the first minute to the very last were loud, heavy and just, well.. brilliant. They are always brilliant live, but tonight it was just flawless. There is a real feel that Lamb Of God, next album depending of course, could possibly dominate in a way Machine Head promised to do so after The Blackening. If their next album is massive then honestly who knows where Lamb Of God could end up.
The set was rounded off with the three absolute belters Laid To Rest, Redneck(which had an absolutely huge sing along) and the ever present Black Label. There was no wall of death tonight, probably due to the huge bars on the floor, but it didn't stop the crowd just exploding into sporadic pockets of chaos. The whole floor erupted in a way only a Lamb Of God crowd can. Absolutely brilliant gig.