Living Sacrifice, War of Ages, Shai Hulud, Lionheart, Great Commission | Reggies’ Rock Club | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader
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Living Sacrifice, War of Ages, Shai Hulud, Lionheart, Great Commission All Ages Early Warnings (Music) Recommended The List (Music) Soundboard

When: Tue., Feb. 16, 5 p.m. 2010
Price: $15, $13 in advance
Christian metal has always faced aesthetic dilemmas that neither other types of metal nor other types of Christian music have ever really had to deal with. Metal has always depended on a feeling of "diabolus in musica" (if not on actual tritones), and if instead it has "the minor fall, the major lift" of a pious hallelujah, it'll lack the threatening charge the music needs—to put it secularly, it'll suck. Not to mention that a large part of your potential audience will condemn your sound as a tool of the devil no matter what your lyrics say. Living Sacrifice, when they started in the late 80s, were one of a very few credible Christian death-metal bands, and they remained so until their breakup in 2003. The Infinite Order (Solid State) is their first album of new material in almost eight years, and they sound like they've never been away. The record makes attacks on atheism ("Nietzsche's Madness") and satanism ("Organized Lie"), but confrontation isn't what these guys do best, despite their thrashy power; they're better at positivity, and their lyrics turn tracks like "Love Forgives" and "God Is My Home" into improbably joyous hymns. Wisely they've rendered that joy almost inaudible in the music—out of the hoarse growls and grinding riffs rises just the faintest glow of triumphalism. Impressive. —Monica Kendrick

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