Soilwork | ‘The Living Infinite’
I dont know about you, but for me, Soilwork were always in the 'also-ran' category.
There was never anything wrong with them as such. Yet they never really threatened to do real damage. As such they always sat a notch behind the likes of Dark Tranquility and In Flames.
How the times have changed. Their expansive new album is briliant, and pisses on what those others have been doing for the last few years.
Who would have thought that a double cd album featuring a whopping 20 tracks could prove so consistently satisfying from a melodic death band band?
Just listen to the hunger and fire in opener 'Spectrum Of Eternity', which explodes out the speakers with a ravishing melodic blastbeat right off the bat.
The energy and quality just keeps coming, and the next two tracks are to die for. 'Memories Confirmed' has some excellently used organ textures behind its beguiling chorus, while 'This Momentary Bliss' is just pure twin guitar heavy metal.
As you'd expect from a release like this, the production is shiny as polished chrome, which for a band like Soilwork with powerful clean vocals and clarity of riffwork suits perfectly.
Basically, they manage to sustain an incredible level of energy and invention across the whole escapade.
And they've developed brilliantly. To my ear the more pensive songs on here sound reminiscent of Green Carnation's 'The Quiet Offspring' – and underrated gem – especially in the likes of 'Tongue'. And they better it, because of those frequently lashed out blasts.
The lads may have been going 15 years at this point, but they're not afraid of the speed. Bjorn Strid's vocals are a highlight across the piece, for variety of tones and quality of note-hitting.
Title track 'The Living Infinite' could be Dream Theater: a great spacey keyboard sound backs up a grooving, engaging chorus that has a mountainsize hook. It's up there with the absolute best.
Part of what's so cool about it is that the band have now matured past the slightly lazy category of NWOSDM. They're simply metal, taking in all it's richness and variety.
No matter what shade of it you're into, and especially cause it's summer, I'd say it'd be very hard not to recognise the calibre of these tracks.
The attention to detail is amazing, while at the same every single one is a fist banger.
Get it into you – you'll be spinning it again and again.
4.3 / 5 – Early Grey ::: 08/07/13