Review Summary: These guys receive a gold star for sounding spot on in the "let's try to imitate Soilwork" contest.
Odium – At The Bottom
Wow, if a band was ever going for gold in the “let’s sound like Soilwork” contest, these guys would be at the top. It’s no secret that the Swedish melodeath sound has harboured a seemingly infinite array of bands (do Swedes, guitars and long hair sprout out of the ground like trees there"), and we now even have Swedish semi-metal with chicks (i.e. Sonic Syndicate), but the whole fad seems to have infected Canada too, by the looks of it. These guys are so into Soilwork and In Flames, that if they hadn’t titled their songs differently I could have mistaken them for a cover band.
If that doesn’t give you enough clues about what this sounds like, let me give you a few pointers. There are semi-groovy Iron Maidenish riffs (like In Flames), a combination of clean, screamed and growled vocals (like In Flames and Soilwork), unmemorable but solid rhythm section with some metallish breakdowns (like In Flames, but more like Soilwork), and subtle touches of melodic keyboard work that don’t completely overpower but add another layered touch (like, again, Soilwork and In Flames). In fact, if someone would have put “Stabbing the Drama” or “My Sweet Shadow” or something like that on this disc, it would have fit like a glove.
So, these guys aren’t original at all. They’re, however, not, ***ty at what they do. Odium seems to have the songwriting down pat: the songs seem to fit together perfectly; the riffs are stale, but they work in context; there are the mandatory semi-gay and super catchy clean choruses you’ve come to expect; but it’s all so old. It’s so boring. It feels like we’ve been here before, and we don’t like going over it again. They aren’t even bad at it. It’s just a “been there, done that” kind of thing. No self-respecting metalhead would be annoyed with this in the background; it just doesn’t lend itself to repeated listening well. It doesn’t hold up. It’s like that take away dinner students eat. It’s nice when you eat it, but you feel absolutely nothing afterwards. There’s nothing more to it.
There’s not really much left to say about this. It’s so standard, so paint-by-numbers, that anything you could say about this record has been done before. Even the production is so perfect and normal it’s almost a crime. It’s like a metal replica. And I am sorry, but more than competent is not going to be the norm this day, and it never will be. If these guys want to get better, they have to think of a way to sound more unique because this comfort zone is occupied. Good luck to you, because if you can play In Flames almost as good as In Flames can these days, you should have the skills to put your own spin on it. Just actually get round to doing it the next time, please.
Odium get 5 replicas of Anders Friden out of 10.