Anders Friden - Vocals
Jesper Stromblad - Guitar
Bjorn Gelotte - Gutar
Peter Iwers - Bass
Daniel Svensson - Drums
This album is In Flames 3rd full-length album. What else can I say, they are the superiors of the Gothenburg genre. They didn’t only began with that typical melodic sound, but they also became one of the most popular death metal acts in the worldwide world. They kept on releasing albums, with Come Clarity as their final result till now. Many people say that their mainstream success became deadly for their creativity, thus making worse albums. I disagree with them, claiming that STYE was a fantastic record, but hey, opinions differ. This album, Colony, is from their earlier work. Most vocals are screamed, and the guitars still take the lead.
Track by Track review:
Embody the Invisible
immediately starts out heavy with a great drum roll and some guitar scraping. Enter Colony! It’s a great song that has the right tempo to head bang on. The only thing I miss here is a good chorus. Unlike most of the other In Flames songs, the chorus doesn’t really stand out, it isn’t that bad though. The song also features a great typical In Flames solo. It’s nowhere as good as The Hive
, or Evil In A Closet
, but it’s a really nice addition.
After the first song Ordinary story
comes in with a standard drum pattern. The song has a very positive sound on it. The song even ends with a very happy tone (listen to it, and you’ll know what I mean). This is also the least heavy song of the album (if you forget the acoustic guitar track), while there are still screaming vocals in it. The verse however is very clean, both guitars and vocals. The drumming is however very standard, it’s not bad however, but with some complex drum beats, the song would probably be even better. The song switches heavy and light throughout the whole song, which is a good thing. It eventually ends on the happy tone I explained before.
is probably my second favourite. Unlike other songs, In Flames did actually put some effort (did I spell it right?) in the intro. The intro features several different guitar riffs, which all rock. The first verse is mainly Friden screaming and Svensson drumming. The reason why this song is one of my favourite is because of the chorus. The chorus has 2 parts, one powerful part with great guitar work and Friden screaming. The second part is more a after-chorus. It’s instrumental but has Svensson present with an ace base drumming. The song goes further with a verse including all the guitars this time. Another chorus, and then the bridge comes. This might be the low point, until the solo. It’s not very interesting and too “un-catchy” to actually remember it. The solo however is great, much better than the first on the CD. Scorn
ends with another chorus and after-chorus. This song is great…
…and is followed by the melodic title track: Colony
. This song is more laidback, as you can hear in the intro. Jazzy keyboards play a tune and some cymbals come in. The heavy intro is very rhythmical and not very melodic. The verse is again like the intro, but with Friden screaming in it. Ouch! I think singing would be a better idea. The chorus isn’t very outstanding either, it hardly draws my attention. Although there is a small singing part in it, it isn’t memorable at all. Even the solo is not up to the standards of the other songs. All in all, I think this is the weak point of the CD. It’s however not a “bad” song.
The next song is the epic gigantic Zombie Inc.
. This is probably my favourite song on this album. Unlike most other In Flames songs the chorus is not the standout part of the song. The pre-chorus is the one that shines. The lead guitar takes a completely twisted melody, as if it’s a mini-solo that blends with the vocals. Friden’s lyrics are also one of the best of the CD. With direct-to-the-point but still elegant sentences as “As a platform for divine foundations,
You want to make them suck.”. After the chorus the song turns 180 degrees, going further as a clean guitar ballad. A beautiful guitar solo comes in while the song keeps quite. After the song is build up again to a heavy metal song, us listeners get another sweet pre-chorus. Although the song is the longest of the CD, little time is wasted. Like many other In Flames songs, In Flames throws away everything that goes on for too long.
The epic Zombie Inc.
is followed by a beautiful acoustic guitar ballad that can be easily compared with Patterns In The Ivy
from Opeth. This is Pallar Anders Visa
, what the name means… I don’t know, but I see the vocalist’s name in it, so it probably has to do something with him. As for the song, it’s barely 2 minutes long, but still I count it as a real song, and not as an interlude. The whole song is composed by the guitars, and strings at the last minute. It’s sweet, mellow but quite dark also, very medieval.
After such incredible heavy metal tracks you wouldn’t expect a track such as this one. Nah, just kidding, this is the same as the one’s before. Coerced Coexistence
is just like most of the other songs heavy with melodic guitars. The chorus is again like the others the best part of the song, with crushing guitars, great screaming and a nice slow drum beat. Just as the other songs, this song also has a nice guitar solo.
The next song is the “Zombie Inc.
” in a 3/4 measure. Although there is no clean part in it, I think those two songs can be compared very well. I’m talking about Resin
. There are great guitars present and also some of Svensson best drumming of the CD. As for the rest… just listen to it by yourself and rate it, I’d say that this is another highlight of Colony.
Behind Space 99’
is the most complex song on the CD. The song starts with some noise followed by some fast guitar and drum riffs. After that, the song changes from a 4/4 time signature into a 3/4 time signature with some 4/4 riffs in it. The verse and chorus have an own tempo, which is pretty awesome in my eyes. Gelotte finishes with another guitar solo, which is not very great though. This is another good track, but lacks the extra spark to be a superb track.
, another incredible track of this CD. This song is a great bouncy song, with some guitar riffs that are top-notch on this CD. Though the song gets less heavy in the middle, the power remains. Even though there aren’t some original ideas brought up in here, it proves that sometimes originality is not needed.
The final song “The New World
” is no difference from the other songs, with the exception of the great solo part. While the verses and choruses have a pretty high tempo, the solo part doubles it. The solo is also the best of the whole CD, with Gelotte (and Stromblad?) going nuts on the guitar. The guitar riffs on this track are also ace, but still stand in the shadow of things like Zombie Inc.
. All I can say from this track is that it’s a perfect closer.
I would say that this is one of the best metal album up to now (my opinion he), especially in the Gothenburg scene. There are plenty of wonderful songs, while there are only a few songs that may seem weaker than the highlights. What means that every song has much quality, it’s just a matter of taste which song you like more (if you even like In Flames).
Best top 5:
1. Zombie Inc.
3. Insipid 2000
5. Ordinary Story
Songs that I don’t really care for:
Uhm, Colony? No, not even that song isn’t very weak or boring.
-Awesome guitar work, while not incredible intense and complex, they use the right notes and speed and create masterpieces such as Zombie Inc. or Pallar Anders Visa.
-Anders Friden with his screaming vocals and lyrics, I’d say that he is pretty underrated in both aspects.
-Songs differ from each other. Don’t expect things like Tool, but In Flames has done it enough to keep everything interesting.
-No single bad song on it, wow!
-Could use more clean vocals
Final Rating: 5/5