Release Date: May 5, 2009
Record label: Koch
Genre(s): Rock, Metal, Punk
The terms metalcore, hardcore, punk metal, and death metal have all been applied at one time or another to New Haven, CT-based Hatebreed, but it was a shared love of all things punk rock that served as the impetus for the band's inception in the early '90s. That's not to say that the 18 covers that make up For the Lions are tapped squarely from the vein of punk history, but at least they finally got around to covering the classic Misfits song from which they derived their name. Like an LP version of Metallica's 1987 $5.98 E.P.: Garage Days Re-Revisited, For the Lions is a love letter to the bands and songs that inspired the group, which means that all of the previously mentioned genres are more or less represented.
Hatebreed, though it has now produced six full-length albums, is somewhat of a cult band. There is a selective group of metal and hardcore ensembles – a musical Mensa of blogger-approved groups – that have garnered the respect of rock critics but have developed a complicated relationship with fans that actually identify with the music’s culture. In a way, Mastodon is now the Kanye West of thrash – metal for people who wouldn’t normally enjoy metal.
While Hatebreed fans wait for the band's next original release, they can sink their teeth into this covers album packed with metal, punk and hardcore favourites. [rssbreak] The selection is on point, bringing to the table gems like Madball's Set It Off and Slayer's Ghosts Of War as well as not-?so-?obvious selections like Subzero's Boxed In and DRI's Evil Minds. The execution is nearly flawless, and vocalist Jamey Jasta's voice takes many of the tracks in new directions, particularly Bad Brains' Supertouch/Shitfit.