Soilwork – Övergivenheten
My first introduction to Soilwork was “The Chainheart Machine” back in 2000. A fiery record steeped in melodic death metal in the best Gothenburg tradition. With each subsequent release the band created their own specific sound by adding clean vocals, electronic textures in combination with incredible songwriting prowess. Albums like “A Predator’s Portrait”, “Natural Born Chaos”, “Stabbing The Drama” and “The Panic Broadcast” have stood the test of time well. With “Övergivenheten”, the band provided another slab of meticulously crafted melodic death metal as only Soilwork can provide…
Stylistically, Björn Strid and company continue with the course set on the previous album, 2019’s “Verkligheten”. The musical emphasis on “Övergivenheten” is firmly on the melodic aspect of their sound, given the folky influences on songs like ‘Nous Sommes La Guerre’ and ‘The Everlasting Flame’. I’ve got to admit that those influences work very well within the overall musical context of this album. On ‘Death, I Hear Your Calling’ the band delivered an ABBA-meets-AC/DC-type hybrid and ‘Valleys Of Gloam’ is the best song In Flames never wrote. Björn Strid’s vocals are in fine form as he effortlessly switches from harsh screams to majestic clean vocals and everything in between.
Soilwork – Valleys Of Gloam
With ‘Electric Again’, ‘Is It In Your Darkness’ and ‘This Godless Universe’ the album features a couple of high octane tracks with all the blastbeats, frenetic double bass and sweeping guitar solos Soilwork is well-known for. They’re a nice musical reference to the “Natural Born Chaos” and “Stabbing The Drama” days. Since the release of “The Living Infinite” and “A Whisp Of The Atlantic” the band isn’t afraid to incorporate progressive rock and metal influences in their music. They continue with this tradition on the earlier mentioned ‘Nous Somme La Guerre’, the Wagnerian-styled ‘On The Wings Of A Goddess Through Flaming Sheets’ and the title track. I really like this side of the band, because it adds a lot of depth and texture to their music.
Soilwork – Dreams of Nowhere
Are there some things to complain about? Well, the album tends to overstay its welcome at times due to its sheer length and ditching one or two weaker songs wouldn’t have hurt either. However, these are just some minor remarks on an otherwise outstanding effort. There you have it, Soilwork has delivered the goods once again on “Övergivenheten”. I wish more bands would sound so inspired so many years into their career!