Review: Living Sacrifice – The Infinite Order

Artist: Living Sacrifice
Album: The Infinite Order
Genre: Death/Thrash Metal
Label: Solid State

After the announcement of their disbandment in 2002, Living Sacrifice, disheartened fans worldwide. A lengthy six years later, the Christian metal forefathers, decided to return to the metal scene bigger and stronger than ever. Anticipation built when the word of them releasing their first full length album since their break-up hit the streets but only hit impatient fans with more bad news. Their release, scheduled to drop in November, had to be pushed back even further to January. Finally, their legacy continues on their seventh studio album, The Infinite Order, on Solid State.

Since their formation in the late 80’s, Living Sacrifice, have been crossing boundaries and creating quite the stir with their faith-driven message, which at the time was almost unheard of for heavy music. Despite the controversial whirlwind, their albums have been well received and respected by many followers. Undergoing many member changes, including founding member Bruce Fitzhugh taking over vocals, their revamped line up is more powerful than ever. Throughout the years they have evolved from thrash-death metal, to groove, and now sounding like a blend of them all.

The Infinite Order, opens with “Overkill Exposure,” which immediately becomes apparent that Living Sacrifice, has returned with a vengeance. Impeccable fast-paced double bass work and thrashing guitars hook you from the beginning. Bruce Fitzhugh is known for his grating and aggressive vocals and that carries on to this album and compliments perfectly. “Rules of Engagement,” has chunky guitar riffs that are executed with technical precision. This track also features David Bunton (The Showdown) on guest vocals and both vocal styles blend nicely together.

Lyrically, they’re not only proclaiming their religious faith but also conveying a message of hope through despair. Although the line, “Your heart has become a grave for robbers. Love turned to hate – justified by fate. Your plague has ruined me, made a mockery. Your tongue is the spear,” from “They Were One,” also proves that there are moments of complete defeat and heartache. These lyrics are deep, spiritual, and create a strong backbone to their music.

“The Training,” exhibits pounding drums and chugging riffs that are sure to please but the downside are the clean vocals during the chorus. They didn’t compliment the lead vocals or fit the song correctly. They were displeasing to listen to and in my opinion the song would’ve been better without. “Apostasy,” is easily the track that stands out above the rest. It is different then anything Living Sacrifice has ever released, making it known that they still have some tricks up their sleeves. The track opens with a beautiful acoustic section paired with violins and transitions to a louder intensity crescendo, and then abruptly returns to the aggressive demeanor they’re known for. It is truly a masterpiece and ends the album on a good note.

Living Sacrifice are veterans to the Christian metal scene and have evidently honed their craft over time. They have changed heavy music and influenced many of today’s bands. After six years of silence they are not only picking back up where they left off, but also improving. The Infinite Order is filled with aggressive adrenaline, including blistering, fast-paced thrashy guitar riffs, monstrous bass work, pounding drums, and impressive vocals yet conveys an amplified and spiritual message. The musicianship and production are both exceptionally strong. Hopefully this is the first of many more albums they release since their hiatus.

Score: 9.5/10
Review written by: Nerissa Judd

James Shotwell

James Shotwell is the founder of Under The Gun Review. He loves writing about music and movies almost as much as he loves his two fat cats. He's also the co-founder of Antique Records and the Marketing Coordinator for Haulix. You should probably follow him on Twitter.

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