Lightning Bolt

Lightning Bolt

Lightning Bolt

Earthly Delights

Load Records

Ah, those tricky metal masters, Lightning Bolt. They wrapped this hour of eardrum-pounding metal in a seductively girly jewel case illuminated with butterflies and pansies and nary a sign of an inverted pentagram or umlaut-studded band listing.

We tear right into “Sound Guardians,” a distorted and full volume wall of sound punctuated by occasional vocals that sound like Dr. Faust sliding down to Satan’s realm. “Nation of Boar” follows with a quick key change but similar intent — this is a band you’ll gladly pay to make your ears bleed. Vocals lurk behind the crashing drum and guitar line, but they sound like a mistuned shortwave aimed at Radio Blechistan. The speaker wants something urgently, but the language barrier forces you to tune in to the next track, “Colossus.” Colossus shows the band’s range; it starts out with nearly a minute of a simple bass line picked out slowly and deliberately, with drums building, guitars walking up confidently, and that lost-in-the-aether shortwave guy singing.

I could go on, but I won’t — the band does it much better than I can. They’ve got six discs out in the wild, and for those who need their rock and roll to taste like straight up Everclear, nothing short of the entire Lightning Bolt collection will do.

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