Soilwork - A big name in metal today, and known for blending aggressive riffs, fantastic melodies, and catchy choruses. With their newest release "Stabbing The Drama," they don't let down. Released in 2005 under NuclearBlast records, "Stabbing The Drama" was awarded with impressive numbers and opened them up to some more fans not only to Soilwork but the whole Swedish melodic death metal scene.
I picked this album up on its release date. I was quite impressive with refined sound. The structure of each song is very clear, and just very distinctive. I also believe that they've grown lyrically on this album as well. I think this is an enjoyable album whether you're a fan of Soilwork or not. Enjoy the review!
Bjorn "Speed" Strid - VOCALS
Peter Wichers - GUITAR
Ola Frenning - GUITAR
Dirk Verbeuren - DRUMS
Ola Flink - BASS
Sven Karlsson - KEYBOARDS
1. "STABBING THE DRAMA" - Alright, we begin the album with the title track "Stabbing The Drama." You are greeted with a cool little synth piece and then literally blasted into the song. Immediately, you'll notice how refined the instruments and vocals are. A really kicking riff pops in at 1:26 and then the chorus soon after.
"I'm waiting, for something to show...I might as well. Just drag me down so low. I'm aiming, for something to show...my punishment. For being down so low.
A really neat part enters the song at 2:55. Strid's vocals really standout here in my opinion. He sounds really harsh. Nice small solo and then back to the verse riffs. Nice synth piece at 3:47 that was heard at the beginning of the song. Really great opening song. [4/5]
Sidenote: *"Stabbing The Drama" was also made into a cool little music video.*
2. "ONE WITH THE FLIES" - Our next song is "One With The Flies." Starts off much like the last track; somewhat slow and then catapults you into the song. A really different part comes in after the aggression. This song focuses a lot on the drums, synth, and bass. The chorus comes in but isn't quite the standout to me. Breakdown comes in at 2:29 and has a nice feel to it. The guitars turn a bit more heavier and a solo ensues. Good song overall, but not as good as the rest of the album. [3.5/5]
3. "WEAPON OF VANITY" - I really enjoy listening to this song. The guitar work by Wichers and Frenning is quite impressive. This song made me think I was listening to a song off of "Figure Number Five" at times. The chorus is great. And lyrically it's also pretty well developed.
"They play divine as immortal sons...Pulling triggers, and then they switch and run."
Overall, it's a great song, and sort of makes you think back on all their other releases. [4/5]
4. "THE CRESTFALLEN" - This is Soilwork at their best here. The song itself is so great and this could be one of Strid's greatest vocal performances (as far as the album is concerned). It starts off faster than the previous songs, with beating drums and a cool little riff. A distorted voice comes in and cuts out and the song chugs along. When you hear Strid sing the chorus you are blown away, sort of makes you want to sing along with him like every other Soilwork. It actually reminded me with of the "Shadowchild" off "A Predator's Portrait."
At around 2:09 the song fades out and Strid comes in and shows you how well developed he has become as a vocalist. Sort of a sadder part in the song. Not many people like this part because it didn't "stick to the structure" or whatever, but I enjoyed and I liked where it was going. A really emotional song, and a great listen. [5/5]
5. "NERVE" - This was the first song I heard off the album and I couldn't stop headbanging to it! I was really impressed with the guitar work in it. Fantastic mix of melody and aggression. My favorite part comes in at 1:56 with good, strong vocals and a cool riff and ambience in the synth department. A solo comes in ty 2:27, and back to the verse. A really impressive song that anyone can just listen to and enjoy. No lacking parts to it. However, it is a bit more linear than most other Soilwork songs. [4.5/5]
6. "STALEMATE" - "Stalemate" is next. Very fast opening riff and very powerful parts to it. I was very impressive with the drumwork in this one, really stood out. Strid, as always, is great and the chorus is catchy. The guitars are really well defined in this one as well. A really cool drum break at 2:15 as Strid chants "Now gimme your best shot!"
Very solid song here. [4/5]
7. "DISTANCE" - Pretty good song here. Has a really weird vibe to it, and when Strid kicks in with that powerful chorus, I was blown away. There's a cool breakdown at 2:10 highlighting the drums, vocals, and guitars. The solo comes in there soon after that fits pretty well with the song. Thumbs up to Mr. Wichers. It then fades out back into the heart of the song. I loved the vocal overlapping and the nice synth at the end of the song. Really good stuff. [4/5]
8. "OBSERVATION SLAVE" - This one is pretty synth heavy in my opinion, when compared to the other tracks. It starts off rather awkwardly when Strid comes in. I got a little scared at when part when Strid comes in with the line "Like a swarm!!!" It gets a little slow afterwards, focusing on the drums, vocals, and synth work. The standout to me begins at 2:29. When I first heard it, I couldn't help but rewind and sing along with "Speed." A VERY grand vocal piece. Solo by Frenning after that and back to the meat and potatoes of the song. [4.5/5]
9. "FATE IN MOTION" - This is probably the slowest song on the track. It has a very different feel to it at the beginning and sounds very unorthodox as far as Soilwork is concerned. A very eerie vocal performance here. The synth is utilize more so on this track than almost any other and you can definately hear it. This song at points doesn't even sound like Soilwork at all. It's a different approach, and is a nice little transition from the aggression of the other tracks. [4/5]
10. "BLIND EYE HALO" - Cool drumming comes in at the beginning. And just keeps picking up speed throughout the song. This really showed me that Dirk has some VERY fast feet. I think this is much more of a death metal song here. Not focusing too much on melody, as you'll hear. Definately one of the more in your face songs on the album. Pretty cool soloing in the middle of the song. This is the shortest song on the album, and my least favorite. [3/5]
11. "IF POSSIBLE" - This is a quite creepy song. The vocal are just freaky. Strid utilizes some effects on his voice that add to the overall creepyness of the song. I liked the song actually. Different when compared to the others songs and shows you what kind of music these guys can create. [3.5/5]
12. "WHEREVER THORNS MAY GROW" - I love this song. Great synth work at the beginning and shows the melody they can produce. As the song continues nice melodic riffing comes in and Strid's vocals ensue. It's another track that makes you want to sing along with him. This is definately synth heavy and Sven definately shines on this one. I love the part that kicks in at 2:29, completely blows me away everytime I hear it. It seems like this song deals with death or reincarnation or something. Rather cool. The album fades with some eerie synth, and you are left wanting more. haha.[4.5/5]
+ A more refined, fresher sound.
+ Catchy choruses, riffs, drums, etc.
+ Lyrically solid.
+ Diverse; sad, to upbeat, to scary, to just brutal. Something for everyone here.
- Some people won't like the diversity, and will see the songs as "filler."
- Choruses can be a tad "cheesy" to many people.
- Leaves you wanting more!
=====>"STABBING THE DRAMA"
=====>"WHEREVER THORNS MAY GROW"
OVERALL SCORE: 4.0 |---*-|