Dark Tranquillity is:
Mikael Stanne - Vocals
Niklas Sundin - Guitars
Martin Henriksson - Guitars
Michael Niklasson - Bass
Anders Jivarp - Drums
Martin Brandstrom - Electronics(keyboards, samples and the like)
Damage Done is Dark Tranquillity's 6th full length album. This is their first major release on their new label Century Media. It comes after their more experimental release "Haven", and before their 2005 release "Character". Dark Tranquillity are part of the gothenburg scene, usually associated with bands like In Flames and my personal favourite, Soilwork. They mix the harshness of death metal with something more melodic creating melodic death metal. It is a very sweet sounding genre.
Anyways, onto the review.
1. Final Resistance
2. Hours Passed In Exile
3. Monochromatic Stains
4. Single Part Of Two
5. The Treason Wall
6. Format C: for Cortex
7. Damage Done
8. Cathode Ray Sunshine
9. The Enemy
10. I, Deception(bonus track)
11. White Noise/Black Silence
12. Ex Nihilo
1. Final Resistance - Starts fairly tame and then turns dark and heavy once the vocals hit. Throughout the song you will hear a battle between melody and sheer power as the song switches between the two. There are strong keyboard melodies here that can mainly be heard during the bridges. Overall, a great introduction to the album.
2. Hours Passed In Exile - This songs starts off with a bell ringing and then from there becomes much heavier. The guitars do some heavy riffage in the song, while using the keyboard for melody. This is apparent in the chorus where you can hear a catchy melody being played under what sounds like powerchords. This is another good song.
3. Monochromatic Stains - This is the major single off of this album, and with very good reason. It opens with a quick guitar riff and then the rest of the band joins in while still playing the riff. The guitar playing on this track really stands out with its quick, dark and complex riffs. It even has some nice little solos. The only time it really becomes simple is during the chorus but the keyboard fills the void. The vocals do their job as well, making this a very catchy song.
As an extra, if you put this CD into your computer you can watch a video to go along with this song. It's pretty artsy and doesn't really match the music but unless the video is the only reason to buy this CD(which it isn't), it doesn't matter too much.
4. Single Part of Two - This is one of the most melodic songs off the album. The guitars and keyboards really complement eachother on this one. The chorus becomes slightly heavier on the guitars while the keyboards maintain the songs flow. The lyrics to this song are pretty good, they tell a story. I'd explain the actual meaning but I really suck at that so I'll just
post the last parts.
A distance kept that never fails to close us in
and forget the days that still linger on
inside the single part of two
We'd rather leave no trace and not look back
Than face the anxiety here and now
It's a good track.
5. The Treason Wall - Another melodic song. It sort of has an epic feeling to it with(what has become kind of a theme now) the guitar and keyboards weaving throughout. It isn't as heavy as the other songs but it's does make up for it. The riffs in this are great and the vocals are pretty good too. Kind of reminds me a Finntroll song, which isn't a bad thing.
6. Format C: for Cortex - Clever title. It references erasing someones mind except using terms to make it sound like a computer. This is a heavier song, the gitars certainly don't take a back seat but they aren't as complex as previous songs. Well, with the exception of one soloish part. The drumming is standout as well, but without a doubt the focus of this track is the vocals. The catchy line "Something has got to give, these things I just don't want you to _____(insert adjective here)" is repeated many times but it's done without getting repetitive. You'll probably notice that the keyboards aren't prominant in this song like the rest of the album.
7. Damage Done - The title track. This one is kind of a letdown. It certainly isn't a bad track but I was expecting much more out of a title track. It's pretty thrashy. The guitars give you a flurry of speed and power on the verses, while the keyboards give you a bit of melody in some parts. It isn't a filler track but it isn't as good as the songs you've heard off this album so far
8. Cathode Ray Sunshine - Time for another outstanding song. This song starts off right away with a sad but agressive sounding intro. It intertwines sad sounding riffs with slightly more agressive riffs and then throws in some keyboard lines to balance it out. It even breaksdown and gives Martin Brandstrom a spotlight for a little bit. It has a chorus that stands out. The phrase Cathode Ray Sunshine is growled calmly. This is a very balanced song.
9. The Enemy - In this song you the keyboards have more dominance than they do on the rest of the album. It guitars back the keyboard up this time. The whole band does a good job here, with the drumming, bass, and the singing is great. Stanne shows his power here. One of the oddest tracks on this CD, but it's also one of the best.
10. I, Deception - This is a bonus track. It makes sense though, it really doesn't fit in too well with all the other songs. It starts off with fast drumming and then it sounds like the keyboards with an odd effect. Everything else kicks in. The song almost sounds upbeat in some parts. I said almost though and it's not a poppy upbeat thing it's metal upbeat. Still, it's a good break from the heaviness of the rest of the album. There's a soloish guitar thing in here and the song even uses some
synthesized beats. I thought it was kind of an odd song.
11. White Noise/Black Silence - The first thing I noticed about this song is that the title is pretty cool. The guitar work on this track is not the best. It isn't bad, but it isn't as melodical and complex as the rest of the album. It's just heavy and along with the drums and bass helps set a good background for the vocals. During the chorus the a cool echoing effect is used for the vocals. Overall it's a good song but I would have liked for it to have more melody.
12. Ex Nihilo - This is the only instrumental on Damage Done. So you can say bye to Mikael Stanne until the next time you listen to this CD. Now, itt is a very dark, creepy sounding song. It seems almost atmospheric in the way it's executed. It's a very fitting end to such an awesome album.
- No filler.
- The band collabrates very well as none of the instruments seem out of place.
- The vocals are very good and the lyrics don't disappoint either.
- Consistent them.
- It seems the same tones are used for the instruments throughout the whole.
- There could have been a few more solos.
OVERALL Dark Tranquillity's Damage Done gets a 4.5/5
If you even remotely like gothenburg metal(melodic death) then you owe it to yourself to buy this album.
Please be nice, ths was my first review ever.