Armored Saint
La Raza


3.0
good

Review

by Trey Spencer STAFF
March 13th, 2010 | 13 replies


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Armored Saint don’t move outside of their comfort zone and the results are a collection of strong, yet predictable, traditional metal songs.

There’s a certain metal news site that’s mostly known for the idiotic posts that inevitably come after each article, and, sadly, I frequent it often. I can’t help it – the news is almost always current and the user posts are occasionally amusing. I mention this because whenever an Armored Saint or Anthrax article is posted there is always a constant argument over which band John Bush should stay with. Honestly, I had never bothered with Armored Saint because I only became aware of John Bush through his work on the mostly-terrible Anthrax albums, but I finally decided to take the plunge. I can’t say that I had any solid expectations going into this, but La Raza still ended up surprising me.

It surprised me because I was always under the impression that Armored Saint were heavier than modern-era Anthrax, but that’s just not the case. La Raza is actually a rather typical traditional metal album with a decent amount of melody and hooks. Despite the predictable nature of the songs, though, they’re still not bad. They’re simply a collection of moderately paced metal tracks full of solid riffs, straightforward solos, and strong choruses. This conservative approach to traditional metal extends into the vocals of John Bush, as well. John’s voice is gritty enough to fit the melodic riffs, but clean enough to suit the big choruses and that is all that is really required for these songs. This conventional approach to metal definitely leaves the album with a very uniform feel, but there is a single exception to the rule – that exception is the title track. “La Raza” finds the band stepping outside their comfort zone by introducing occasional tribal elements as well as a groove and swagger that is missing from the rest of the album.

I have to admit that I would have liked an album that moved a little beyond the no-frills approach that is found here, but on the other hand, it’s not a bad collection of songs. There’s really not too much more that could be said about the album and it seems that the band would have it no other way. They seem very content with belting out some solid metal tracks that don’t require too much effort on the part of the listener, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Oh, and about the argument mentioned earlier… this is easily better than John’s work with Anthrax and I have to side with those that think he should stay right here.



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user ratings (21)
Chart.
3.1
good

Comments:Add a Comment 
Willie
Moderator
March 13th 2010


16019 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

There's not a lot to say about this album. Due to that, this review was finished pretty damn quick. Check this out if you're looking for some metal without any outside influences.

Digging: Skrew - Universal Immolation

Piglet
March 13th 2010


4654 Comments


I knew you were going to become a mod one day.

Willie
Moderator
March 13th 2010


16019 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

ha ha, why? That's probably not a compliment ;)

cvlts
March 13th 2010


8960 Comments


this sounds fucking terrible.

Piglet
March 13th 2010


4654 Comments


You're avatars of course! they are always so... moddish haha

Willie
Moderator
March 13th 2010


16019 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

@Piglet: Yeah, sure that's it ;)

@This Life: It's definitely going to be an acquired taste because there's absolutely nothing 'special' about it at all. It's just a metal album in every sense of the term.

Mags172
March 13th 2010


127 Comments


I've heard a few songs off this and I really liked it. Will probably get this.

Willie
Moderator
March 13th 2010


16019 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

They're good songs, they're just not very exciting.

Steerpike
March 14th 2010


1861 Comments


If I want straightforward metal, Armored Saint are one of my go-to bands. I still say that Reign of Fire is the best song they've ever written though, but Glory Hunter is a close second.

This album's on my wishlist.

Willie
Moderator
March 14th 2010


16019 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I'll check those songs out because I'm curious about what their older stuff sounded like.

NebSnurb
March 14th 2010


535 Comments


Madhouse and Can U Deliver were always songs I liked.

Metalstyles
Staff Reviewer
March 14th 2010


8370 Comments


sounds decent enough, will aquire. Good review man

Deathcar
March 15th 2010


1534 Comments


Average is album, is well, average. Some good moments though, makes you think that if they stopped phoning it in they could write a really really great metal album.

Congrats on being 'modded' as well man.



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