Tag Archives: Metal

Soilwork- Verkligheten Album Review

Here we are, exploring an album from another band that I have not heard of. In general, I like to think that I know a lot about music, but discovering all of these people I don’t know makes me think otherwise. Soilwork is a Swedish death metal band formed in 1995. They have a huge discography so I am looking forward to getting introduced to them.

  1. Verkligheten- This should be the main focus of the album as it shares its name with it. It is strange that they have it first as normally these songs are at the end so here goes… Oh this is interesting, it is an instrumental track which I did not expect. It reminds me of a song that would work on the Assassin’s Creed soundtrack. This is a fairly relaxed start to a metal album, which is interesting.
  2. Arrival- For a metal group the instrumentals are really clean. It is really melodic at times which is cool.The vocals are actually really good while there is screaming elements, it is mixed perfectly with powerful clear vocals. I like that I can understand what is being said because some metal bands are hard to hear. The guitar riffs are clean and prove that they are a melodic death metal band.
  3. Bleeder Despoiler- I have to say that the vocals are my favorite part of this group so far. While the instrumentals are hard hitting, there is a tenderness (which might not be there I’m just picking it up) to Bjorn’s voice that makes Soilwork so much more interesting than other bands. This song is about a woman bleeding this man dry, but it is hard to pick up on that theme.
  4. Full Moon Shoals- I’ve noticed that this album has repeated the same song structure through their songs. Hopefully, they change it up a bit. The chorus maintains that singing that has been throughout the songs. It is a little pop-rocky which is not what I was expecting or necessarily wanting, but his voice sounds great. The bridge picks up the pace a bit, but the rhythm change makes the song sound hectic which is what I thought the album would be like.
  5. The Nurturing Glance- The instrumentals change throughout this song from hints of classic rock to what I now know to be Soilwork’s sound. This song is about the end of the world. They use biblical references which creates an interesting juxtaposition with their sound.
  6. When the Universe Spoke- The intro to this song creates a certain expectation of what the song is going to be and once the vocals start it shifts. Not sure how I feel about that. The content is interesting because it is about the idea that God’s creation isn’t what the universe wanted which is a cool idea. I wish they strayed a bit from the template that they seem to have.
  7. Stalfagel- The electronic influence is interesting especially keeping the music video in mind. The use of a female singer (Alissa White-Gluz) adds something new to their sound. The content itself is mediocre. It isn’t anything that I haven’t heard before, but it isn’t bad.
  8. The Wolves Are Back in Town- This is the point in most albums that if the songs are going to get stale it is here. Sadly, that is what happens. While once again, the vocals are good, there is not much to comment on. The content is basic along with the classic metal instrumentals.
  9. Witan- This song has a cool concept in the corruption and darkness of governments. It’s about control which is interesting. I think there is more they could have done. The song isn’t as powerful as it could have been.
  10. The Ageless Whisper- Another basic song. I knew this wouldn’t happen but I was hoping it would be a metal reimagining of Careless Whisper. The instrumental break is cool but it doesn’t add anything to the song.
  11. Needles and Kin- This song features Tomi Joutsen- who sounds amazing. The song itself is sonically pleasing, but I wish that it could have been good enough to make the album better overall. The lyrics are really repetitive which is nice if they are catchy but that isn’t the case here.
  12. You Aquiver- I can immediately tell that they brought in Dave Sheldon for the guitars. Even though I don’t know who he is, the instrumentals are so much better than in their other songs. It is a lot cleaner than the last few songs which calls back to the first few songs on the album. The lyrics are metal stereotypes, which this entire album has been, it’s not necessarily bad but it is expected.

Overall, the first few songs got me excited that I would be hearing something new. Verkligheten and Arrival set up the album to be melodic and clean, which I was excited for. The middle songs reverted back to what I thought metal was and I wanted something new. You Aquiver was a good ending song because it brought back the things that I had liked before. My main problem with this album is its inconsistencies. With a great lead vocalists like Bjorn Strid is, I thought that he would be challenged more. I give this album a    

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Legion of the Damned- Slaves of Shadow Review

To start things off, although my favorite super-genre of music is rock, I don’t listen to metal. It’s not that I dislike it I just don’t go out of my way to listen to it. For this review, and all of my reviews in the future, I will be writing whatever I’m feeling while listening. It might be dumb or misinformed, but it is my experience. Oh, it will also be incoherent because I want this blog to show every thought that comes to my mind while listening.

I have never heard of this band although they have been around since 1992. I have absolutely no expectations so here we go.

  1. The Widow’s Breed- I found out that this was the single form this album that was released in October. It’s a very fast stereotypical metal beat. Electric guitar is the star with drums providing backup. Rhythm change brings a bit of confused feeling as the new rhythm seems shaky.  The lyrics are about a serial killer who uses remains for witchcraft. The lyrics aren’t anything new and appear to be a bit random at points. They don’t tell a consistent story and don’t provide anything to think about
  2. Nocturnal Commando-  Almost sounds the same as last. Electric guitar in the first 1:30 broke up the monotony of the instrumentals. Night slaughter imagery is prevalent. About taking revenge in the night. Nothing exciting or unexpected. It’s very difficult to understand, which is expected. Wish there were lyrics so I could follow along.
  3. Charnal confession- finally, something that isn’t the exact same as before. Lots of religious imagery. Guitar and drums are fighting with each other. About confessing sins. Another electric guitar spotlight. Someone who sees themselves as a god of revolution.
  4. Slaves of Southern Cross- No time to settle into the instrumentals immediate vocals. Layering of the vocals gives a demonic sound, but I feel like it could be amplified to be more effective. About being a slave to the devil.  Everything is sounding the same. If this is different than the first two songs then I’m not picking it up.
  5. Warhounds of Hades- Much slower beginning. The drums are given the most attention and allow for a build up of suspense. Disappointing that when the lyrics begin it sounds the same as others. Roars in the background add to the intended atmosphere. If there were more then the idea of being in the underworld would have worked better. Rhythm change brings a new, more powerful feel to the song. This band sounds better when they aren’t so focused on being fast and hard but rather powerful and slow. Sadly, it reverts back to old habits.
  6. Black Banners in Flames- interesting beginning with guitar being main focus, yet it sounds the same. The pause set expectations for something new. Have to focus hard to hear lyrics from this group. Religious themes. New voice other than the lead singer allow for a slightly different sound.
  7. Shadow Realm of the Demonic Mind- Sounds like a soft ballad at beginning, electric kicks in with the soft piano in the background. Gives a nice new sound. Makes me hopeful of where this goes… and it reverts back to the same. So much hope through many of these songs yet I get let down.
  8. Palace of Sin- Once again- same fast electric guitar. I wonder if this was on purpose or if they just didn’t try very hard. With everything sounding the same I want to focus on lyrics, but I just can’t understand very much. This proves that I really don’t listen to metal. Near the end it started to slow but picked up again almost right away which, once again, left me disappointed. It’s not that I don’t like fast I just want something new. It’s about being a servant to the devil. At least their themes are consistent.
  9. Priest Hunt- Something new! Hopefully, sounds like a demonic yet angelic choir. Please don’t disappoint me. Jumps in to metal sound, luckily it is a bit different. While the general rhythm is similar the guitar is slower. The vocals are echoed by a few different voices and it adds a bit of the choir theme back into the song which makes sense due to the content. It’s about demons hunting priests which is pretty obvious by the title.
  10. Azazel’s Crown- Basic. About a fallen angel who earns his crown in hell. Electric riff in the middle was cool, but it didn’t add anything to the song because we heard them try to use the same tactic before. The longer guitar section was a good divider between the two portions of the song because the second half vocals were slightly slower.
  11. Dark Coronation/ Outro- seems to pick up from where the last song left off. For an outro song I was expecting something with a bit more impact. There is a mystical kind of spacey guitar portion in the middle. The last 1:20 brings back the horror space galaxy theme with the guitar totally gone with a toned down droning. Feels ethereal but also like something bad is about to happen. Interesting ending but it feels random. It might be a stretch but with the religious themes of the album the spacey theme might be a counter to heaven and hell.

Final thoughts: Meh, although I do not listen to this genre fairly often, I feel like I have heard this exact sound so many times before. I want something new, something that could possibly make me want to listen to metal more. This album, although there were some interesting themes, felt lazy. With just about every song sounding the same, it didn’t allow me to get invested in the journey that they could have possibly taken me on. If I had to give it a grade it would be a

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