Originally posted on Valkyrian Music.
When I reviewed “The Ride Majestic”, about three and a half years ago (damn, feels like yesterday!), I said something about being surprised with how SOILWORK could still impress me. Well this time they didn’t catch me off guard: I’m still impressed but I was counting on it.
A fellow reviewer said they’ve gone more melodic but I don’t think that’s quite it; I mean, sure, “Verkligheten” is a more melodic record, but I don’t think it was intentional. I believe they’ve just focused more on being intense than actually heavy, and such deeper sound enhanced the melodies which have always been a part of SOILWORK. Take the latest single, “Stålfågel”, for instance; those initial synths bearing an Alan Parsons whiff, the growls of someone who claims to be Alissa White-Gluz (but it’s not – unless you’re listening to the iTunes version of the song) a mere shadow in the background of the chorus and the so straightforward solo result in an enthralling combination that’s way more than just “melodic”. it’s still my favorite song, by the way, even if I stood a bit disappointed when the lyrics didn’t match the title’s tongue. In fact, despite the Swedish album title, all songs are sung in English. Shame. At least one should be pretty interesting.
Tomi Joutsen was also invited to snarl over “Needles And Kin” but his presence is much more highlighted – the own nature of the song enabling it. I dare saying this is the heaviest song (“Arrival” right behind it), the riffing and drumming even reminding some black metal refined act, but the chorus always featuring some harmony to go along with the rest of the album.
I really hope “The Ageless Whisper” makes it to the live shows as it’s a very anthem-like track which I already imagine everybody clapping their hands to, in sync with the drums in its intro and later on, right before the solo. But several others, and for several reasons, are prone to turn the crowd into a bunch of happy campers ‘cause I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one loving “Verkligheten” as a whole.
Label: Nuclear Blast
Producer: Thomas Johansson
- Bleeder Despoiler
- Full Moon Shoals
- The Nurturing Glance
- When The Universe Spoke
- The Wolves Are Back In Town
- The Ageless Whisper
- Needles And Kin (ft. Tomi Joutsen)
- You Aquiver (ft. Dave Sheldon)