Tennessee deathcore band Whitechapel just dropped their second live album on Friday called Live in the Valley on Metal Blade Records. That’s “Live” with a long “I” sound, not a short “I” sound. They’re not telling you to go live in the Valley. The live album was recorded at their Christmas Benefit Show in 2022 but, despite having been recorded around Christmas, it disappointingly does not include any metal covers of Christmas songs, robbing us once again of a death metal cover of “Dominick the Italian Christmas Donkey.”
The live album was recorded, engineered, mixed, and mastered by the band’s own third guitarist, Zach Householder. When there are two other guitarists in the band, aren’t you supposed to have less work to do? As the album was meant to close out a specific chapter in the band’s career, most of the songs on the live record are from the last two Whitechapel albums The Valley and Kin. However, the whole thing ends on two of the band’s classic tracks: “This is Exile” and “The Saw is the Law.” To commemorate the release of their new live album, Whitechapel released the live video for “This is Exile,” which is the second live video released off of Live in the Valley, the first being “Lost Boy.”
“This is Exile” was the title track off the band’s second album, an album that marked a departure for Whitechapel after their early material had all been about the murders of Jack the Ripper. Opting to move away from the cheery subject matter of the rape and murder of British sex workers, This is Exile found the band addressing corruption and hypocrisy in organized religion. Which I guess could also involve the murder of British sex workers. Priests get up to some freaky shit.
Following the release of Live in the Valley, the band intends to start working on their ninth studio album fairly soon.
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