Sometimes it’s just easy to describe myself as a metal head, but truth be told I’m into hard rock music and dabble in metal. I’ve always had a tremendous respect for Lamb of God without being able to get into their music. Let me rephrase that, I love their music, but I need melody in my metal not just screaming. But let me be clear, that’s on me. That all said, I have seen Lamb of God live and they blew everybody off the stage.
“As the Palaces Burn” appears to be a documentary about front man Randy Blythe’s sobriety mixed with the recording and touring of the newest album “Resolution.” It’s a fascinating character study of this man. Anybody who judges heavy metal should watch this documentary to see how normal and talented these guys are. Randy had a troubled past. When he drank he couldn’t just have one or two, he had to drink until he couldn’t drink any more. As he was approaching forty he realized that he had to stop, and he did. Going into the documentary he had been clean for two years. The band sounded better than ever, they were playing better than ever.
Then they did the festival circuit in Europe while playing headlining dates in between and when they landed in the Czech Republic they were detained because a fan had died at their show two years prior. They let the band go, but held Randy in custody for around 3 months. This became a national news story, but not front page. But the amazing thing about this particular story was that Randy was never really portrayed as the victim. It certainly appeared as if the government was messing with him, but the fact that one of their fans, died at their show was never forgotten. Even when Randy gets off at the end there’s a moment of happiness for Randy, but at the same time somebody is still dead.
This documentary isn’t just about Randy Blythe, it’s also a tribute to that young fan, it is a tribute to all the fans. I do a movie review podcast called I Hate Critics. I desperately wanted to share this movie with my cohosts. One of them, Josh Adams took me up on the offer.
You can listen to the episode we discussed “As the Palaces Burn” here
Read Josh Adam's review at http://filmfanperspective.com/2014/03/20/documentary-review-as-the-palaces-burn/
Also check out my chat with Chris Adler from Lamb of God here: http://www.zoiksonline.com/2012/10/lamb-of-gods-chris-adler-talk-about.html
BYLINE: Bob Zerull is the Managing Editor of Zoiks! Online. He writes pop culture commentary, does interviews with bands, and reviews music and stand-up concerts. He also administers Zoiks! Online's Facebook page. Follow Bob on twitter at bzerull. Email Bob at firstname.lastname@example.org.