Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Dark Tranquility : " Atoma"

Well right from the opening song I did not go into this confused as to if this was Killswitch or not, so that is a good sign. Granted these guys are often to At the Gates in terms of what I personally want from death metal, as At the Gates to me is more of a thrash band, I want my death metal to be a little darker. The title track starts off sounding like a H.I.M song and keeps tapping that vein during the verse, though the sung vocals are not as dramatic. This song doesn't have any surprises hiding behind them corner and is pretty much late 90's dark metal. They get a little darker on "Forward Momentum", but are more much of the hard rock coming out of Europe in the late 90s. It ramps up to about Kataonia speed before the 2nd verse.  I kind get lost on the two songs after this as they blend into on another, "Force of Hand" is the better of the two and is more dynamic causing me to focus back in and not relegate this to background music.

'Faithless By Default" reminds me a little of Samael. The lyrics are a little on the cheese heavy side. This is better than what the "the Pitiless" offers me which is boredom. "Our Proof of Life" is still pretty middle of the road, but more engaging even with the sung vocals. There is a cool galloped section in this song. The intro to "Clearing Skies" sounds like it could be a Lacuna Coil song. It does get heavier, the snare is a little stiff on the verse. The go into almost a break down like section while you are waiting for a big chorus that doesn't really come, which at least means they are breaking from the formula. Even though it is more driving "When the World Screams" just blandly passes me by. When I go back to try and figure out why it didn't make more of an impact, the second listen isn't much more inspiring. There is a darker intro to "Merciless Fate". The sung vocals are really well used for a change here.

"Caves and Embers" is ok, melodic in the right places, but not as focused as some of the album's stronger moments. This is better than their last album, but far from perfect, but the band is heading in a better direction even in their more middle of the road moments I'll round this one up to a 7.5, but don't feel the need to listen to it again.

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