Austrian Death Machine – Double Brootal (Metal Blade Records)

Sunday, 17th March 2013
Rating: 7.5/10

This is dumb, but “funny dumb,” if you will. The second album from this Tim Lambesis (As I Lay Dying) side-project, Double Brootal is a 2-CD tribute to actor/current California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in the form of original songs, each with a guitar solo (from members of Unearth, The Human Abstract, All Shall Perish, etc.) and a spoof on the actor’s voice. It’s funny for about the first three listens, then the jig runs out quickly.

Musically, Austrian Death Machine is jarringly heavy, not unlike As I Lay Dying, but without the the metalcore manuerisms that often sully Lambesis’ main band. Thrashy, up-tempo numbers like “Let off Some Steam Bennet” are loaded with triplets and heavy transitions, while “Who Told You You Could Eat My Cookies” and “Allow Me To Break the Ice” follow a similar pattern.

The second disc has some surprisingly fun covers, especially of Judas Priest’s “Hell Bent For Leather” and Megadeth’s “Killing Is My Business…and Business Is Good.” Metallica’s “Trapped Under the Ice” and Motorhead’s “Iron Fist” get the cover treatment to a similar degree with “Ahhnold’s” voice adding some comical color.

There’s a definite limited shelf life of Austrian Death Machine, but Lambesis must be doing something right – this project has gradually taken on a life of its own since last year’s Total Brutal. Where this fits in the grand scheme of things is anyone’s guess (and methinks no one cares if it does or not), but for now,Double Brootal is fun…for a limited time.

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