Sound — 8
This being their first record it is understandable that it will in no way be their best. The band really sounds like they are trying to find their sound and come close without completely nailing it. Even Randy's voice sounds less polished than on their later albums. On this record Randy hasn't quite developed the powerful distinctive voice that he has on their later records and as a result ends up sounding like 20 million other metal singers.
Lyrics — 8
The lyrics are standard metal death and anger. Nothing special. The lyrics are extremely hard to understand on this record and I found myself holding the CD booklet while listening to the album and asking myself, "What?" Like I said earlier, Randy's voice isn't as powerful and distinct as it is in their next albums and he hasn't yet been inspired to write his usual political lyrics so the songs sound like every other metal band out their.
Overall Impression — 8
This is by no means their best work. But it's not all that bad considering it's their first record. If you already have "Ashes Of The Wake" and "As The Palaces Burn" go buy this record so you can have all their full length cds. It is not an exactly stunning debut, but not all that bad nevertheless. If you are just getting into metal and/or Lamb of God than start out by buying "As The Palaces Burn" or "Ashes Of The Wake" first than go back and buy this record. If it were lost or stolen I would burn myself another copy of off iTunes.