Here’s How Mark Morton Ranks Every Lamb of God Album
Lamb of God guitarist Mark Morton has revealed his personal ranking of every Lamb of God album.
The only record not included in this ranking, which Morton did via video with Revolver, is Omens, which will be released on Oct. 7. Since fans haven't had the opportunity to hear it yet, he didn't feel it would be entirely fair to discuss how it fares amid the rest of the Lamb of God catalog.
Bringing up the rear at No. 8 is 2015's VII: Sturm und Drang, of which Morton recalls lots of tension that existed within the band and the strained personal relationships between the band's members. Although he wrote a fair deal of the album, the guitarist insists, "the relationship I had with that material wasn't particularly enriched." He did shout out "Embers" as a highlight, however, noting that it's not all bad in his eyes.
Resolution falls at No. 7 and Morton said of the 2012 album that it was a "shitty time" for him personally, dealing with addiction issues. "I am firmly in long term recovery now and I'm open about that as well and it's a wonderful thing, but I wasn't then," he recalls, in part, later adding, "On a purely technical or critical standpoint on the record, it's just too long."
Morton jokes the "third shittiest" Lamb of God album is their 2000 debut New American Gospel, which claims the No. 6 spot. Not trying to downplay the significance of the album in regards to the band's early success, he admits the low level production renders the album "unlistenable." Still, he's grateful for the learning process that came with it.
At No. 5 is 2006's Sacrament, which bears some all-time Lamb of God songs in "Redneck" and "Walk With Me in Hell." Morton's criticism? It's "inconsistent" on the whole with some songs "you just kind of want to skip over."
Wrath, the 2009 album that succeeded Sacrament, figures in at No. 4 and it's the album Morton feels is their most consistent from front to back. And he's pretty smitten with Josh Wilbur's production too.
The first album to crack the top three is 2020's self-titled effort, the first to feature drummer Art Cruz. "It answered a lot of questions about the band. It answered any questions people might have about if we could survive a member change. It answered a lot of questions about whether or not we were still motivated about our songwriting. It answered a lot of questions about our ability to continue and our sustainability and our longevity as a band. And I think it does the same thing that Wrath does... and you can listen to this album top to bottom."
"My ego wants to go against everybody and tell you why I'm right and you're wrong, but I put Ashes of the Wake as the second best Lamb of God album," declares Morton. It really is the record where the sound and identity of the band solidifies. It really congeals on this record and it sets the template in a very clear way for what Lamb of God would be and what a Lamb of God record would be like. And that template in a lot of ways is still in place."
That leaves 2003's As the Palaces Burn to take the No. 1 position in Morton's ranking. "It sounds urgent — sort of like scarily desperate. And it sounds like it's about to fall apart or burst into flames at any minute. The whole album sounds like it's at the point where it's about to get engulfed. It's a corny way to describe it," the guitarist explains, seemingly still in disbelief at what the band managed to pull off on their sophomore album. He praised Randy Blythe's genuinely pissed off vocal performance too.
To hear all of Morton's comments on his ranking, watch the video below.
Look for Omens to drop on Oct. 7 and catch Lamb of God on tour now with Killswitch Engage (through Oct. 20) at these dates and get tickets here.