The Unguided
Hell Frost


5.0
classic

Review

by simonpettersen USER (18 Reviews)
November 22nd, 2011 | 20 replies


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: If this was a Sonic Syndicate album, it would’ve been their best, but fact is… It is not.

By now we all know the world sensation of the popular metal called Sonic Syndicate. They had a good thing going for them with tree respectable albums; “Eden Fire” in 2005, “Only Inhuman” in 2007 and “Love and Other Disasters” in 2008. Although in 2010 the band left their fans in disarray with their new musical direction. Question is; will The Unguided be able to reclaim their lost legacy with their debut album Hell Frost"

For those of you who don’t know, The Unguided is a metal band from Falkenberg, Sweden. The band was formed after Richard Sjunnesson’s departure from Sonic Syndicate due to their 2010 album “We Rule the Night” and it’s rather mainstream rock direction.

Some might say The Unguided is a pure Sonic Syndicate-clone. This is true, but what can you expect from a band where 4 out of 5 members are in fact from that band" Seems rather redundant to me. So yes, the dual harsh/clean vocals are back, the melodic leads and sing-alongs are back, and the pop inspired keyboards are back. This was in fact what made Sonic Syndicate such a success back in the days, so why change the formula that worked for them for such a long period of time"

What made Sonic Syndicate fall on its own back was their lack of creativity. Some of their songs sounded completely the same; this is not the case with The Unguided. With their debut album Hell Frost, The Unguided has taken everything that was good about Sonic Syndicate and taken it to another level. So yes, if this was a Sonic Syndicate album, it would’ve been their best, but fact is… It is not. Even if it shares similarities with some of their older albums, Hell Frost has plenty more in store than just a plain Sonic Syndicate album.

There’s improvement in every aspect of their sound;
Richard Sjunnesson’s harsh vocals have never sounded better, and due to Roland Johansson retiring from harsh vocals duties, he has plenty more space to scream his lungs out. Although I miss Roland’s screaming at times, he has brought something completely new to the table; excellent guitar playing! Roland doesn’t only have an impressive and powerful voice he’s also quite the talented guitar player and shreds the album to bits and pieces with his blistering guitar solos. A good example of this new found sound can be found on songs like “Betrayer of the Code” and “Green Eyed Demon”. Speaking of guitar playing, the bands composer and Richard’s brother, Roger Sjunnesson has improved as a songwriter and brings The Unguided to new and explores side, like the songs “My Own Death” and “Where the Frost Rose Withers”. These are by no means something we would’ve found on a Sonic Syndicate album, where “My Own Death” features a groovy yet catchy guitar riff and “Where the Frost Rose Withers” is a slower track that still keeps its heaviness and doesn’t turn into a ballad. Not everything is new however, we still have songs like “Inherit the Earth” and “Collapse My Dream” that sounds much like classic Sonic Syndicate. So have no fear… there are still sing-alongs! Not strange since possibly half of the songs on the album are either reworked unused Sonic Syndicate or Fallen Angels (former Sonic Syndicate) songs, "Phoenix Down" and "Inceheart Fragment" are an example of reworked Sonic Syndicate songs.

The keyboards are also improved, they no longer sound overproduced or as the main aspect of the songs. They are now a part of the songs structure and fits them nicely, compared to We Rule the Night where the keyboards either sounded like the main instrument or totally out of place. Henric Carlsson from Cipher System is the bands bassist, but Jonas Kjellgren from Scar Symmetry (whom also produced the album) played the bass for the album, and there’s not too much to say, they fit and follows the guitars nicely, but never plays anything unexpected. The drumming, John Bengtsson from Sonic Syndicate does his fair share to make the album sound as good as it does. His drumming never seems to disappoint me. He keeps it at a tight level and is truly a talented drummer. Glad to see him also joining the rebirth of Sonic Syndicate, wouldn’t have been the same, he has a distinct way of drumming that fits their formula perfectly.

All in all, Hell Frost is the best album made by any of these musicians. It is truly a masterpiece worth picking up. I don’t have any complains about this album. I hoped for screaming by Roland, and possibly a ballad, but what I got was far better. Even if you didn’t like Sonic Syndicate, The Unguided might just change your mind.

Recommended tracks: Inherit the Earth, Betrayer of the Code & Where the Frost Rose Withers



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user ratings (86)
Chart.
3.7
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
BallsToTheWall
November 22nd 2011


48167 Comments


with tree respectable albums;

Sonic Synidcate is respected by trees?

Digging: American - Violate and Control

BaseballJames
November 22nd 2011


393 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Probably not worthy of a 5, but it sounds promising. I loved the first three SS albums.

seedofnothing
November 22nd 2011


3425 Comments


for an extended album preview see

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1zrRu5dkTlQ

not really sure if I like it. but im digging some of the melodies im hearing, but the clean vocals kill it for me, and the dirty vox sound a little too metalcore for my liking but it doesnt bother me that much

BallsToTheWall
November 22nd 2011


48167 Comments


and due to Roland Johansson retiring from harsh vocals duties, he has plenty more space to scream his lungs out.


Uhhh what the fuck is this supposed to mean?

1SecondToDie
November 22nd 2011


35 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Not fan of Sonic Syndicate, but more than half of Hellfrost songs I really like. Songs from 4 to 6 are weak side of the album, monotonous and boring. Awesome begininng and solid end of the album brings this album on the top of my current playlist.

Scrambled
November 22nd 2011


394 Comments


"Some might say The Unguided is a pure Sonic Syndicate-clone. This is true, but what can you expect from a band where 4 out of 5 members are in fact from that band? Seems rather redundant to me"

this paragraph made me lol

also the trees thing

classic review

Eclecticist
November 23rd 2011


3863 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is an incredibly weak review, I will have a better one up for this album within the next few days.

1SecondToDie
November 24th 2011


35 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Ok than, I changed my mind about this album (after few days). My final opinion in the next review.

stranger
November 29th 2011


803 Comments


simonpetterson vs. the english language, round 10

a bout for the ages

FrozenVain
February 18th 2012


2955 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

Hate this album...It sounds exactly like "insert random sonic syndicate album here". The sound is just so very unpersonal and boring. I actually had hopes for this...

zaruyache
April 8th 2012


17950 Comments


Band sucks. More contrived melodic metalcore/pseudo-melodeath bullshit.

Ikarus14
July 8th 2012


977 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Album doesn't merit a five. Even a three is pretty generous. Still, this is a shit-ton better then that god awful We Rule the Night album (or anything else Sonic Syndicate ever put out for that matter).

sl4y3r
January 3rd 2013


49 Comments


A 5? You made my day, sir. How the hell does this average shit even have 3.7 lol

Vakarian12
April 19th 2013


4087 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

album rules, can't wait for the new one

FrozenVain
April 19th 2013


2955 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

arf

Viraemia
September 11th 2013


54 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Nice album!



Especially the clean vox are top notch.

InFlamesWeThrash666
May 18th 2014


6996 Comments


Very solid album

Digging: Kawir - Exilasmos

deyp
May 19th 2014


106 Comments


Yeah I liked it. Those melodies got me.

RockerToad
December 15th 2016


99 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Whoa some of these mates are salty because they hate keyboard synths. LOL

Stargazer777
October 8th 2017


84 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This album is legendary and almost strikes as a classic album. I can't believe these morons disrespecting this band. They have massive impact of instrumental skill and creativity for every song on this album. Great review man. I bet their newest album coming next month will be just as good as this one. ;)



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