Neah…1,2,3,4….Neah…1,2,3,4….Neah! If you’ve ever heard Arnold Schwarzenegger speak, you know exactly how that sounds and that is the opening track for Triple Brutal, the third full length from Tim Lambesis’ solo side project Austrian Death Machine. As side projects go, this one was always rather ambitious in nature as it is a blend of As I Lay Dying type metal with lyrics or at least inspiration supplied by Schwarzenegger films. As Tim Lambesis once said in an interview, As I Lay Dying is “heartfelt and full of passion”, while Austrian Death Machine is on the other side of the spectrum and an “outlet of pure testosterone and stupidity”.
As any fan of metal knows, Tim apparently took that to heart, abusing steroids and then being arrested for, and pleading guilty to trying to hire a hitman to kill his wife. To be honest, that makes this album almost some sort of bad joke as it had a release date of April Fool’s Day and given Tim’s current situation, it seems rather odd and/or wrong to release an album filled with references to violence and death no matter how campy it is. On the other hand, the album was largely, possibly entirely, crowd-funded and the proceeds have been publicly promised to go to the charity World Vision and all of that took place before Tim’s legal troubles surfaced. Recently, to add to the general drama…Tim apparently posted a “band” statement to the As I Lay Dying website (asilaydying.com) explaining the band’s new situation, much to the chagrin of the other band members who had no knowledge this was going to happen as they had been posting teaser clips on their own personal pages. One ray of hope in all this is that Tim said that in the last year he’s had time reevaluate his lost faith and now sees things differently and considers himself a follower of Jesus. So, I’ve said my peace about “the Tim situation” and how I feel in general about this album, but I was a fan of ADM from the beginning and have even seen them live, so pretending none of the legal/personal issues of Tim’s occurred, let’s see how this album rates.
Just in case anyone is still unclear about ADM, imagine an Arnold impersonator adding some vocals to As I Lay Dying songs sung by Tim Lambesis that have titles/themes/subject matter straight from Schwarzenegger’s movies. From my view, ADM from a song standpoint is a better version of As I Lay Dying since there are no clean vocals/choruses. It’s all brutal, for lack of a better term. Tim obviously has a big hand in the overall sound of As I Lay Dying and you can’t help but hear that coming through in these songs. Lots of double pedal bass at high speeds, fast guitar riffs, driving rhythms, growled deep vocals and typically some good guitar solos (usually courtesy of guest artists). Throughout the album there are scattered comedy bits where Tim is talking to Arnold, trying to get him to soundcheck or warm up vocally or asking about having a guest role and getting advice involving cheese and in some cases even poking fun at Arnold’s own set of personal problems that became public.
Metal with a sense of humor is something more bands need to do. Everything is performed in all seriousness and professionally but the subject matter and lyrics are often, for lack of a better term, silly. The live show was no different. The band played, just like any metal band should, Tim sang/growled just like he does as frontman for As I Lay Dying, but there was an Arnold impersonator wandering around the stage and between songs, they did things like have pushup contests and dispense fitness advice. Triple Brutal is the third ADM album, with Total Brutal debuting in 2008, Double Brutal in 2009 and a couple of Christmas eps thrown in in 2008 and 2011. Given the satirical nature and that this is a side solo project, it is somewhat surprising that ADM has continued as long as it has, but I would attribute that to the overall quality of the music and general cleverness in terms of lyrics and approach to the songs. Arnold has had his share of memorable, quoted lines in movies and ADM takes full advantage of all of those and in doing so has something that resonates with an audience.
The album does have its awkward moments considering Tim’s situation, like in “I lied”, a song inspired by the film Commando that begins with “remember when I promised to kill you last….I lied” and continues to have a chorus with the same line. I struggle with seeing how that cannot do anything but resonate badly. If this would have been released in earlier days, no one would have batted an eye at it as it is directly from the movie. Thankfully, the song “Consider Dat a Divorce” was pulled from the release, but that also speaks to the general awkwardness of this album.
Overall, this is probably the best of the ADM albums from an overall song quality standpoint. Nothing will ever top hearing “Get to the Choppa” for the first time, but from start to finish, Triple Brutal is filled with fast, driving metal that can help anyone who is “looking a little bit like a noodle” get some “gymspiration” to get in “One More Rep”.
Written by John Jackson
1. Neah 1, 2
02. I’ll Be Back
03. Chill Out Dickwad
04. Prepare To Be Conquered
05. One More Rep
06. I Hope That You Leave Enough Room For My Fist
07. Pumping and Humping
09. I Eat Green Berets
10. Acting Advice
11. You Lack Discipline (There Is No Bathroom)
12. I Know Now Why You Cry
13. I Lied
15. Get Your Story Straight
16. Brutal Recall
17. I’m Not A Pervert
18. It’s Turbo Time
Tim Lambesis – guitars, bass, vocals
Joe Gaudet – Arnold vocals
Brandon Trahan (Impending Doom) – drums
Guest Artists (Track – performance)
I’ll Be Back – Guitar solo by Wes Hauch (The Faceless)
Chill Out Dickwad – Guitar solo by Mark MacDonald
I Hope That You Leave Enough Room For My Fist – Guitar solo by Chris Storey (ex All Shall Perish)
One More Rep – Guest vocals by Jamey Jasta (Hatebreed), guitar solo by Dan Palmer (Death By Stereo)
Crom, Grant Me One Request – Guitar solo by Doc Coyle (God Forbid)
Pumping and Humping – Guest vocals by Lorenzo Antonucci, guitar solo by Sean Swafford (Aenimus)
Prepare To Be Conquered – Guest vocals by Ash Avildsen (Sumerian Records)
I Know Now Why Your Cry – Guest vocals by Jon Cooke (Winds of Plague)
It’s Turbo Time – Guitar solo by Mark MacDonald
I’m Not A Pervert – Guitar solo by Jason Suecof
“Total Brutal” 
“Double Brutal” 
“A Very Brutal Christmas” EP 
“Triple Brutal” 
Record Label: Artery Recordings, April 2014
Video below ‘Prepare To Be Conquered’
Video below for ‘I’ll be back’