When it comes to touring, Lamb of God are about as ruthless as a group of war-torn killer chimps. They are in the midst of a world tour, including a December leg through Canada with Metallica to promote the release of their upcoming album, Wrath. Though they're still immersed in of spreading their music across the country, it's nearly time for these impervious relatives of man to brush the blood of touring off their teeth and get back to business.
"I'm excited about touring with Metallica," says guitarist Mark Morton. "I think that it's going to put us in front of a lot of the people that haven't seen the band yet. When we go out with Slayer, Ozzfest or Slipknot, I tend to feel that most of the crowd are aware of what we do. With a tour with like Metallica, who for the last 10 years have been such a mainstream band, I think there is going to be people there that haven't been exposed to us yet. It's a really good opportunity for us to play in front of some new faces and really show people what it is that we do."
Lamb of God has been the dominant metal-ambassadors in the North American heavy-metal scene for the past two years. Morton explains his take on expanding the band's reputation into new territories and what he hopes to achieve with the new album.
"We are excited about working with Roadrunner in other territories, because heavy metal is what they do and, at the end of the day, we are definitely still a heavy metal band," he says. "We should have the whole world coming at this point. My goal with Wrath was to make a record that I really liked, which I would say applies to every time we go to make a record. We look at every record we do the same, from the very first Burn the Priest [Lamb of God's previous moniker] record to the latest one, we just want to write songs that we enjoy listening to and enjoy playing."
While recording Wrath, Lamb of God took 11 months off of touring, which resulted in some time for Morton to pursue some extra-curricular activities including race car driving and contributing to the world of gangster rap, collaborating with the crudest of crude, shock rapper Necro.
"I did a solo on his last record," says Morton. "I had actually been aware of Necro for a long time. I definitely get a kick out of what he does. I take it all with a sense of humour and I always thought that he has an interesting take on rap and how he puts it into metal. Some of his subject matter, although I find it to be a little off colour, I get a kick out of it. My buddy that was managing him asked if I would be interested in contributing to the record. I did a solo on one of the songs and it turned out really cool. It was kind of an off-the-cuff thing and when it all came together I was like wow, that solo turned out great."
All of his musical experiences are a far cry from his original aspirations as an alumnus of Virginia Commonwealth University.
"I didn't finish my graduate work, I got my bachelor's degree in political science and I was studying for my master's in international relations, but I quit school before finishing to focus on music," says Morton. "I write a fair amount of lyrics for the band. If you go back through our albums and read the lyrics a fair amount of them are politically motivated, [which] are a result of things that have been on my mind along the way."