Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Ashes of the living

Before Lamb of God, there was Burn the Priest. Originally formed in 1990, the band began to come into its own with the 1997 release of a pair of split 7”s, with Agents of Satan (Deaf American) and Zed (Goatboy Farms), followed by a self-titled full-length on Legion Records that was produced by the omnipresent Steve Austin. I remember seeing them at CBGB’s around that time and being seriously impressed with their heaviness and the singer’s vocal range, especially since he looked like a stick with a baseball cap and glasses.

Listening to these records now, it seems fairly easy to trace the continuum in their musical development. There are still lots of fast grind parts on the full-length, accompanied by shrieking screams. The second song, ‘Dimera,’ echoes the chopped up beats and vocals of ‘Ruiner’ from the split with Zed, as do several other songs. Those parts are still among my favorites and you can still hear some of that in Lamb of God as well, I think. Aside from that, considering that Lamb of God are supposed to be representing “new heaviness” in music, it’s amazing how they sound more like old Metallica and Slayer with every release. But that’s probably not necessarily a bad thing and they definitely mix things up enough to keep it interesting – without run-of-the-mill singing parts, thank you very much.

According to their website, the songs from the splits as well as a few others were released as a collection on mp3.com a few years back which is no longer available anywhere. I missed that, so if anyone could hook me up with those mp3s I’d greatly appreciate it. Meanwhile, here are the songs from the splits as I have them. Also check out the Burn the Priest full-length, reissued in March of this year.

Burn the Priest – Suffering Bastard
Burn the Priest – Preaching to the Converted
Burn the Priest – Ruiner
Burn the Priest – The Ballad of Kansas City


Blogger Andrew @ AVERSIONLINE said...

Heh, I was thinking of posting the first Burn the Priest demo sometime. I used to have an EXCELLENT dubbed tape that their drummer gave me years ago with lots of unreleased stuff on it but by damn best friend/roommate at the time borrowed it and lost it forever. Pissed me off, needless to say. I still have the demo and the split 7"s, and maybe some other random stuff, I'll see if I can dig up any other obscurities from their early days...

8:35 AM  
Blogger sweetandsound said...

please, go ahead and post whatever you have. i'd be very curious to hear that stuff. i haven't heard anything by them that was recorded before 97.

10:29 AM  
Blogger Bill said...

nice... I wish the Zed stuff was up though.

10:31 PM  

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