Sunday, 8 May 2016

Arctic Void – Entangled (CD)

I shall admit, I’m not a huge fan of the current semi-proggy power metal scene. Most of the bands sound very similar in style and sound. Actually, opening track “On The Padded Wall” didn’t really impress at all, and sounded like the band had been manufactured using the industry standard mould. Yes, they sound great, but not original at all. However, in the second track, “State of War”, things really started happening. A killer track with a dramatic touch, powerful riffing and pounding drums. Great vocals from Olof Lindgren. “Sleeping Under Water” opens with Olof’s vocal partner Anna Samuelsson taking the lead. Another powerful track with nice vocal interplays between Olof and Anna. Great, tasteful guitar solo, too! “Who Am I” starts out really great, but to me chorus is way to “Eurovision song contest”. “The Rising” is another intense and pretty good track, but on this one I’m not really a fan of the mix. It feels a bit out of balance with the vocals and keyboards one layer above the compact and slightly muddy guitar, bass and drum package. “Labyrinth” is another track I’m a bit on the fence about. On one hand I do like the powerful chugging guitars, but I’m not really a fan of the gothy vocals. “Obsession” is a straight ahead powerful track with nice duets between Olof and Anna. They do remind me of Sonata Arctica mixed with Amaranthe (without the growls) at times. “A Blink Of An Eye” is another straight ahead melodic power metal offering with chugging guitars, soaring keyboards and nice vocal interplays. “Ghosts Are Calling” also caught my attention, despite the, at times, gothy vocals. It has some cool guitar patterns and a nice arrangement. Good vocal melodies, without being too cheesy. Great guitar solo, again. Nice one! Gothenburg based Arctic Void leave off with “Blackwood”, where, unlike my previous criticism, the vocals are almost a tad too low in the mix. The wall of guitars sounds a bit like what you’d hear from a band like Soilwork. I am a bit on the fence about this album. It has some really great highlights, but at times it feels a bit generic. Still, top quality performances all around!
Janne Stark
Year: 2015
Country: Sweden

Label: Power Prog

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