Although 2009's Wrath was something very hard to beat, I still thought objectively that LoG's 2012 release Resolution was a bit of a disappointment. It basically stopped me listening to Lamb of God, that was until they released Sturm und Drang.
Their first five albums were all better than the last, culminating in the overwhelming groove of Wrath; I felt that Resolution was the first step sideways instead of forward. Sturm und Drang shows a return to originality along with the raw, chaotic (I do not mean sloppy) feel of Wrath. I think maybe the band is trying to capture that sound again; I felt Resolution was a bit clean and tight, more like Sacrament. By all means Sacrament was a sick album, but you know, they already made it.
Sturm und Drang takes no prisoners from the first track 'Still Echoes', full of sick riffs, Chris Adler's meaty bass drums and even some blast beats which is rare. Randy Blythe (vocals) having written 90% of the lyrics for this album (as opposed to 10% for the past few), there is some real body behind this one (no generic metal phrases). Apparently a lot of the songs on the record were written or inspired by Blythe's time in prison. That is a separate tale, however.
I have to say track 3, '512' is my personal favourite at the moment. That song is the Lamb of God that I love, heavy, full of groove and minor blues-ish, shred-ish guitar lines and a phat bass sound. Also the guitars become slightly darker, more like a Black Dahlia Murder riff than the more metalcore sound.
I totally agree with directions explored by songs like 'Overlord' as well; it's almost a standard pop/ rock song (except for the heavy chorus). Randy even has a go singing on it. Doesn't do badly at all.
I don't want to ruin anything for anyone, so I'll just say that there are a lot of fast songs on this album, a lot of groove put back into the verses, and some lyrics that really come from somewhere important (rare for a heavy metal album). If you felt Resolution was a sign LoG might be beginning to move in circles, Sturm und Drang (literally 'Storm and Stress') will make you think again. It's not some crazy experimental record, but it is an exciting new Lamb of God that has almost made them my favourite band again...