Review Summary: A product of industrialization
I’m at a loss for words. Not because Obsidian
is breath-taking or that this is the worst thing to ever cross my ears. No, I’m at a loss because there isn’t anything to say, really. Which is ironic for how overwhelming this record can be at times. There is so much going on without much coming out of it. Northlane dives deeper into their balancing act of their metalcore and industrial/electronic mix, yet fails to mesh the two cohesively. Instead, Obsidian
suffers from an amalgamation of ideas and concepts without a point; a disjointed mess of metal compositions and electronic elements interacting much like oil and water. Despite a few successful choruses (title track and “Clockwork'') and the occasional heavy groove that garners attention (“Xen” and “Clarity”), the record disregards coherent progression and instead opts to put similarly styled tracks together and hope for the best. This isn’t the same Northlane they once were. No, that time has long since passed. Instead of being pioneers of a genre, their recent output feels like a mechanical product; something lacking any punch behind it. This is a modernized, industrialized, mechanized imbalance. Obsidian
never finds its groove and attempts to compensate with an overwhelming mass of elements that have no final destination.