A record that released to mixed reviews and was dogged heavily on Metal Archives, I myself have mixed feelings too about the disc. First of all, the frontman wanted to go for a much different approach to vocals which feels like they’re injecting an unnecessary hardcore gutpunch into what was relatively intriguing melodic death metal. In order to fit in with the continuing post-core technical death metal trend, it would seem that these guys have almost overhauled their sound completely, except for melodic leads here and there that briefly recall the brilliance of that Swedish melodeath scene and make me want to relive it – more than this album, to be honest.
It is a record that comes across overly technical, but does manage to have a few interesting sections here and there which are peppered by the Arch Enemy influenced (or I should say Michael Amott influenced) leads and solo sections. There are also some rather hefty grooves that I don’t mind, even though by the second or third song, the barks from the frontman have already gotten on my nerves. I know of a few people who would stop the listen more or less immediately after they’d heard this kind of vocal being attempted, and even though I respect the band’s attention to detail in the vein of melody, there are so many Japanese melodic death metal acts that I would rather jam over this, like Veiled In Scarlet.
Reanimation just feels like modern extreme metal to me, and it doesn’t really carry anything with it that wasn’t crafted to appeal to the new generation. As an older listener, I do recognize these melody lines and hope that they’ll inspire a new generation of metal fans to pick up some of those old melodeath classics – or add them to their Spotify playlists, as I have seen done often. In an age where the kids chew through albums like myself and a box of Mike & Ike’s (despite my rather small frame) it often makes me wonder what kind of tunes will roll out of their social media conditioned and mobile app powered minds. That could very well be a reason for the surge in extremely fast and technical music, which has given everyone on the planet something akin to ADHD.
I have to be honest though, the guys are giving it their very best here in the studio and I did find some of the listen to be a rather dazzling storm that quickly passed overhead with the kind of speed I would have expected on a mid-era Dragonforce album. Coupled with the groove sections and melodies I noted earlier, Reanimation is actually worth a listen for fans that may have put it off based on bad reviews. Though chances are that you weren’t waiting on me to tell you to check out a disc that’s been out for several months already, were you? Give it a try at the link below.
(12 Tracks, 44:00)