Hear Lamb of God’s Blistering New Song “Routes” Featuring Testament’s Chuck Billy

photo by Travis Shinn

Virginian metal stalwarts Lamb of God have released yet another blistering ripper from their upcoming politically charged self-titled album due June 19th via Epic Records. The new single,”Routes,” was inspired by frontman Randy Blythe’s first-hand experience alongside native peoples at the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North Dakota during the No DAPL movement.

The vocalist says, “I went to Standing Rock because I had heard reports of violence committed on the peaceful protestors there by both state law enforcement and private security contractors, and this violence was not reported in mainstream media for the most part. I went to bring supplies and support these people, who were trying to protect their water, and thereby protect everyone, as everything in the natural world is protected. I was there a week, made some great friends, and learned a lot. It was a very profound experience in my life, and I knew one day I would write a song about it.” You can blast the track below.

While his time and thoughts are expressed through the song’s vivid lyrics, Blythe felt it was necessary to have a native voice on the track. He called in his friend Chuck Billy, who is of Pomo Native American heritage, to lend a deeper authenticity to his narrative. “My experience, although my own, was tempered and shaped by the hundreds of years of brutal oppression of Native peoples in our country,” explains Blythe. “So, it was imperative for me to have a Native voice represented on the song, and Chuck Billy was happy to be that voice. At the end, there is a call and response section — Chuck calls and I respond. This is intentional. Musically, it is symbolic of my experience there. A native voice leads, bringing forth positive energy and calling to the people to unite, and I reply, providing support. That was my physical experience, and it is reflected in the song.”

For his part, the Testament vocalist adds, “It was a great honor as a proud Pomo Native American to be asked by Lamb of God to do some guest vocals on this song. The No DAPL movement by the indigenous people of this country was a historic event,” says Billy. “Being able to lend my voice to represent the Native American people, complementing Randy’s storytelling and lyrics, is something really special to me. I’m glad this movement was put in a musical message, and I am extremely happy to have been a part of it.”
Lamb of God is available for pre-order now, including in a new alternate CD cover version signed by all five band members.