Allow me to point out while I believe Escaping the Grave is not Grave Robber’s best release, it’s also anything but a dud. That being said, it’s 11 tracks of ghoulishly fun punk rock for all ages. Fans of the circle pit craze will find plenty to enjoy in songs like the opener “Into the Pit” and “The Beast Within”, which is one of the album’s best highlights despite it only clocking in at one minute and 14 seconds. A noticeable change is that some of the songs are titled after zombie cult classic films like “Zombieland”, “Evil Dead” and “The Conjuring”.

It’s also worth noting that the trademark “Whoa-Oh’s” aren’t as frequent, but aren’t hard to miss when they occur. One such example is in my personal favourite “Lips of Blood,” which is a creepy but easygoing tale about the women who sell their souls to become lustful fantasies for easily enticed men of the world. As with other Grave Robber albums, spiritual context isn’t always easy to find throughout due to themes from horror films being used as metaphors. However, this factor is why the band is best experienced in a live setting. Wretched provides perfect segues into GR’s more poignant and thought-provoking songs by explaining that the band’s mission is to point the lost to the Re-Animator (God), so that they can join the army of the undead (true believers in Christ). While many of us are patiently waiting for the real season of Spring to arrive, the season of the undead in punk has made a welcome return to the scene. Make Escaping the Grave a part of your 2018 CD collection today!

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