Sonic Syndicate
We Rule the Night

1. Beauty and the Freak
2. Revolution, Baby
3. Turn It Up
4. My Own Life
5. Burn This City
6. Black and Blue
7. Miles Apart
8. Plans Are for People
9. Leave Me Alone
10. Break of Day
11. We Rule the Night
12. Dead and Gone (bonusspår)

Nathan James Biggs – vocals
Richard Sjunnesson – vocals
Roger Sjunnesson – lead guitars, keyboards
Robin Sjunnesson – rhythm guitars
Karin Axelsson – bass guitars
John Bengtsson – drums, percussion

Eden Fire (2005)
Only Inhuman (2007)
Love and Other Disasters (2008)
Rebellion (EP 2009)

Jonas Kjellgren - guitars/keyboards

Toby Wright (Producer, mix and Engineer)
Peter Tägtgren (Producer and Engineer)
Roberto Laghi (Mix)
Dragan Tanaskovic (master)
Tobias Lindelll and Freddie Norén (Engineer)
Gustavo Sazes (art)
Linda Åkerberg (photo)

Released 27/8-2010
Reviewed 20/11-2010


Sonic Syndicate has become a sort of house band for Hallowed. This is probably the only band we've covered every album and interviewed them twice. But it's not like we've showerd them with flowers, sure they've got some but the grades so far has been 3, 4 and 5 and things we've complained about is things like the songs sound too much like eachother, that the song-writing has been a bit lazy, that they've been playing them nonchalant and that they lack profile. Clearly, they must feel a bit frustrated that we never get satisfied and ith this first full lenght album with their new vocalist they've worked their ass off and now we just have to be satisfied!?

Well... Do I have to? No.

Sure, this is a good album, I'll credit the band with that. Especially the first half is good, then my interest gradually falls and such a big difference in Nathan compared to the old Roland is actually quite hard to find, except pherhaps that Nathan is Brittish and Roland was Swedish. The voices holds no bigger difference, and in looks they are quite alike too actually. In their voice limits they reach pretty much the same levels and the biggest difference instead can be found in the music. This this it's a bit tougher, more straight to the point and not as much slacking walk-around-with-my-feet-dragging-against-the-floor-playing over it. This time the band reaches climax earlier and for both good and bad it feels as they've written more or less hit-songs thrughout the entire album. Already they have released three singles from the album (four if you include the one year old pre-released EP-single Burn This City) and more could very well come regarding how the songs sound. The sad thing is that this leads to the album starts lacking identity. Listening at this album, seeing the videos and looking at pictures of the band makes me feel like if I was following the Eurovision Song contest - a lot of surface and songs that gets to you quite fast but nothing worthy even considering selling the pets for.

When they even gets up in tempo for the last refrain I can't help my self from lauging out loud. The songs structure is built from the classic sheet with no exceptions and the biggest variation the do is to do one or two verses before they do the chorus. How they dress, act and looks in the videos is nothing different to any of the divas from the song contest. They are styled, directed and poses around all the stereotypes connected with hard rock. It's not like I find anything to complain about that, many bands uses these, but if it only had feelth for real and from the heart instead of an act I could go along with it. When these guys won the Nuclear Blast big competition fo a contract a few years ago they got alot of attention and since then it's like they think they have this gigantic pressure or craving to over do how they were and takes this conception totally out of proportions. Eithe they do it or the label, but to me it seems like they mass-produce singles, songs, albums, videos and live shows without putting anything of them selves in it. The music is good, but in the same way as Die Hard 2, Lethal Weapon 2 and Rocky 2 is - absolutely nothing wrong with it but they are just follow ups, nothing is original and when it's finished it's simply just finished, it's not likely you go directly to forums and blogs to praise it.

Anyway, regardless of it's depth and substance, the kind of music Sonic Syndicate play is a form of melodic death metal with male clear vocals and screams varied. The tempo is quite high and technical it's pretty simple and also for being death metal it's pretty soft produced and not far from the commercial radio stations if you ask me. Keyboards and electronics have got pretty much of the sound picture, which has made the production itself sound bigger and the sound more complete. The album feel completed and expensive and it's clear to me that Nuclear Blast aren't shy to put money in the hands of their talant competetion winners. The quality of the songs actually feels as it lives up to the poduction, like most pop music played on the radio I don't think there is much that crawls under your skinn and nests in your heart. It's fine as long as the music goes on but when it reaches the end it's simply over. Even if I pressed the repeat button a few times before we got there I don't feel an urge to sit through the credits or applaude it when the lights go on again. The album is good entertainment but if it were up to me to save a few albums before they were all destroyed, this wouldn't be one of the albums I'd chose for the future humans.

My favorite song of the album is the first one, Beauty and the Freak and most of the four singles are good, otherwise 'We Rule the Night' slowly and steadily falls down to the swamp of third and fourth movie standard. With that I'm not saying it's all boring and isn't entertaining, but the reason we came for it was to see a great, original story of epic proportions but now Sonic Syndicate all to often falls on stereotypes and too established routines. I'm not disapointed or think the ticket was wasted money but there are other movies I like to think back on and talk about from this year. Like Dark Tranquillitys original epic 3-D story in the spring because it's experiences like that which reminds you of why you're so deep into this. A typical sequel like this is almost Dead and Gone as soon as the credits starts to roll.


Label - Nuclear Blast
Three similar bands - Scar Symmetry/Slipknot/Dead by April
Reviewer: Caj Källmalm