Given the rather grave situation in which Tim Lambesis finds himself in currently, it’s surprising that ‘Triple Brutal’, the third full-length offering from the As I Lay Dying frontman’s Arnie inspired side-project, has seen the light of day. All court case drama and question marks over his alleged guilt aside however, it’s certainly a shame that the album may represent the last output we will see from this talented all-rounder for some time. Yet, chock full of explosive metalcore fun, ‘Triple Brutal’ makes for a perhaps unfittingly upbeat creative hurrah for Lambesis.
Although never straying from the project’s trademark comedic violence, the songs here deliver not only a fleeting grin and some uncanny Schwarzenegger impersonations, but a barrage of high caliber metallic treats. The chest caving chug of opener ‘I’ll Be Back’ is as rousing as it gets here with its call-to-arms chorus refrain and, indeed, throughout the album the blitzkrieg thrash riffage and scream along hooks rarely dip below top notch.
Guitar leads (contributed by a glut of guest shredders) thrive on blistering speed and technical showboating, breakdowns are executed with fist-to-the-throat precision (just check out the monstrous ‘You Lack Discipline (There Is No Bathroom)’ and the devastating bounce which rounds off ‘Pumping And Humping’) and, between the smirk inducing skits, Lambesis turns in a record which, given its lighthearted nature, hits home with a brutal, testosterone fueled potency which would see any metalhead worth their salt salivating, regardless of their sense of humour (or lack thereof).
It certainly says much that the strength of a side-project’s backcatalogue is a hairs breadth from sitting toe-to-toe with the day job. In the case of Austrian Death Machine and its bone snapping merriment, the project stands as testament to the undoubted expertise and fertile artistry of Tim Lambesis, and cements even further how regrettable the outcome of recent events may be for fans of contemporary metal.
Written by Tony Bliss