Nov 012011

Grave Robber is a christian horror punk band from Indiana, America. They draw heavily on The Misfits and have added the searing attitude of The Sex Pistols and The Ramones plus the theatricals of GWAR, Slipknot and Lordi. Their musical style is gothic hard rock with a hearty dash of punk and metal. The vocals are a tuneful bellow that sounds like a cross between Johnny Cash and Joey Ramone.

Grave Robber is also visually shocking with their horrific looking costumes and rotting corpses in the artwork. But if you scratch beneath the surface you might be surprised to find out that two of the guys are pastors and that all the band members are part of the worship teams in their respective churches. The line-up consists of Wretched (vokills & shovel), Lamentor (guitar & vokills), Carcass (bass & vokills) and Plague (smash doom tubs). The band’s main releases have been ‘Be Afraid’ (2007), ‘Inner Sanctum’ (2009), ‘Exhumed’ (2010) and ‘You’re All Gonna Die!’ (2011).

After a dark intro of a flatlining ECG machine, this glorious high-octane romp charges in with “Just remember this, my friend / No one here is exempt / No one gets out alive. . . / You’re All Gonna Die”. If that wasn’t enough they storm through ‘Paranormal Activity’ with its spiritual warfare theme “Does the late night thriller chill you to the core / Well, my friend, real monsters are just outside your door / or perhaps they’ve made their way into your home”.

Stepping away from the horror for a moment, ‘The Invisible Man’ is about how we deal with homeless people. Are they really so far removed from us that they are unrecognisable? Then ‘Something Wicked This Way Comes’ reflects upon the depravity in this world “There’s nothing here that hasn’t been done / There’s nothing new under the sun / There’s nothing here we’ve never faced / There’s nothing sacrificial blood can’t erase”.

After this aside its back to rip-snorting horror punk in ‘Haunted House’ and their trademark classic horror film dialogue inserts and “Whoah-oh-oh” choruses. There is a detailed spoken explanation before the ‘Incredible Shrinking Woman’ that introduces The Reanimator. If you can’t work out whom it is a metaphor for, then just head over to their myspace or facebook page and read their info.

The final couple of songs take on a more metallic edge, with ‘Fill This Place With Blood’ starting out with a speeded-up ‘Iron Man’ riff before moving into crunchy guitar and some scorching shredding. “Slaughter at twilight / A destructive plague at hand / Come the destroyer / Strike down the firstborn / Cower behind blood soaked doors all throughout the land”. And then howling into ‘Curse Of The Werewolf’ with stomping rhythm and chugging riffs.

Their relentless commitment of performing to a high standard shines throughout. This release sees Grave Robber aiming high and hitting their mark.

Rating: 9/10

Written by Peter John Willoughby

Label: Rottweiler Records / 2011

You’re All Gonna Die
Paranormal Activity
Invisible Man
Something Wicked This Way Comes
Haunted House
Incredible Shrinking Woman
Last Man On Earth
Fill This Place With Blood
Curse Of The Werewolf

Wretched – vokills, shovel
Carcass – bass, vokills
Lamentor – guitar, vokills
Plague – smash doom tub

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