Review Summary: Another Melodic Death Metal album from Sweden. What is in the water over there? Sonic Syndicate are a band to watch, but they still fall into the trap of sounding like one of the many copy cat melodic death metal bands out there.
Sweden has given birth to some of the most influential bands in modern Melodic Death Metal, bands such as In Flames, Arch Enemy and Dark Tranquillity are the precursors of the Gothenburg sub genre of this genre (there are so many genre‘s now its stupid). Now it seems Sweden is delivering its next litter…
Sonic Syndicate are at the forefront of this new movement in the world of melodic death metal along with acts such as Scar Symmetry and Blinded colony. Combining soaring vocals and guitar melodies with the deep growls and speed of other earlier death metal acts. This new breed are set to go mainstream in the metal scene. Sonic syndicate first came into the spotlight after winning the Nuclear blast battle of the bands competition and have since been praised by the likes of Anders Friden of In Flames and critics.
I picked up this album after writing a review of bedtime prayers by Blinded colony and being messaged about checking this band out and I was not disappointed. From the word go you can tell this album is going to be a high octane roller coaster of an album, songs such as the opening track “Aftermath” and lead single “Denied” are packed full of crushing guitar riffs and soaring melodies, maybe to many but it works. To add variety to the album a slower track has been thrown into the mix in the form of current single “Enclave” which shows off the newly recruited singers vocal range and also shows that the band aren’t just a one trick pony (is that even a saying?). The faster paced songs are what make this album a stand out album amongst the many copy cat melodic death metal bands out there at the moment, the sheer amount of melody and clean vocals make the album very hard to take out of your CD player. Another interesting fact about this band is that they have two vocalists, one who screams and the other who mainly sings, this adds variety to the songs and maybe gives them an edge over other bands (but when your Christian of Scar Symmetry you don’t really have to bother with two singers!).
This album isn’t without its flaws, there is a reason I have only rated it 3.5 just above good and not excellent. it’s the fact that they are not in any way that original, you could name a hundred bands who sound like them, maybe not as good but like them in terms of style and structure. This band has obviously just followed the Swedish trend of trying to sound like the next Soilwork or In flames and some tracks just get a bit repetitive and similar sounding. An example of this is that the tracks “Aftermath” and “Double Agent 616” start of pretty much exactly the same with a keyboard or something playing over a guitar riff to give and almost power metal sound, although this sounds good a million bands have already done it (the intros of both tracks always make me think of Rejection role by Soilwork).
Overall the album is a very good listen but don’t expect an album that is going to change your outlook on metal or anything really.
Songs to Download (even though downloading is naughty and personally I don’t do it)