You Only Live Twice

01. Let Me Out
02. Feed The Demons
03. The Great Pretender
04. You Only Live Twice
05. Dirty Woman
06. We Want More
07. Leave Me Alone
08. Monster
09. Season Of The Reaper

Brain - Peter Tägtgren
Right arm - David Wallin
Left leg - Michael Bohlin
Balls - Johan Husgafvel

Cynic Paradise (2008)
Psalms Of Extinction (2007)
Live Is Overrated (2006)
Dancing With The Dead (2005)
Nothing Remains The Same (2002)
Rebirth (2000)
Pain (1997)



Released 3/6-2011
Reviewed 30/5-2011

nuclear blast

Pain, a side project of Peter Tägtgren of Hypocrisy or if you like producer of millions of metal bands, he is the brain of the band called pain, for some reason it is a band where there are no people playing instruments there are just body parts which is quite strange I would say but then again what do I know? I know that one guy in the band is named Johan Husgafvel which makes for a funny joke in Swedish or at least it is a funny name, much like Clark Gable actually. But funny names or album covers, or what have you is not what this review is about, it is about the seventh studio album of pain (first one came in 1997).

What is it that we will hear on this album then? I would say everything. It is such a diverse album in terms of the types of songs that are on the album and yet they are still woven together nicely by a general soundscape thanks to the skilled producing hands of Tägtgren. It is synthetic, it is rock’n’roll and more or less everything in between. If you really want a general description of the music on this album, have a look at the album cover. There are nine songs on the album and they require 40 minutes of your time if you desire to listen to them all at once, a reasonable time for an album I think. It can be said that there are many layers in the music on this album, and it would not be wrongfully said. It is not layer upon layer though, it would seem that there is a general idea behind it all and not just a lot of layers to create a massive wall of sound.

As already stated, it is difficult to describe the music of this album but if you think James Bond due to the album title, then you are completely wrong. It is more something of the western movie genre that comes to mind, Sergio Leone films in particular and The Good, the Bad and the Ugly in more particular. The title track reminds me a lot of said mover but there is some general feel that makes my mind go in that direction, I don’t really know why though but one thing can be said and that is that the album has a cinematic sound. I think that if you are judging by the cover and thinking Tim Burton movies then you also have a point it is a bit darkish like in many of those movies, so western or Burton, it is really hard to pinpoint much like trying to really work out the dynamics of life in the ant community.

The music, or rather the songs take off in completely different direction all the way around, going AC/DC for a while, cinematic, maybe a little Rhapsody of Fireish and also a stab at the discoball, like directions on a compass really. The thing is though that they somehow manage to keep it unified and not directionless, it is really like it is a compass on the magnetic pole, all the directions come together at one place there, much like this album. Ants, compasses, magnetic poles, disco, cowboys, movies and ancient rock icons and some italians all rolled into one review, what else can I conjure up? Nothing? We’ll see.

The third track is one fantastic track, energetic, a little discoish something that would almost make Alice in Videoland cry from envy but it is at the same time a really nice rocker, a track that has more or less everything is what it is and it is great. I can say the same about the title track, except for in every single way of description as this is more of a cinematic track. I always come to think of the magnificent The Ecstasy of Gold when I hear it, you know from that movie I mentioned earlier, at least it bear traces of Ennio Morricone’s compositions while still being an epic rock anthem which is again brilliant. I think that if Rhapsody of Fire heard this they would almost commit suicide, they have been trying for years and years and several albums while this is the first real epic Pain track I hear and it is a success immediately, maybe Peter should start writing the music for Rhapsody so that they became more epic than pathetic. But enough Rhapsody slamming for now, lets move on, Dirty Woman is the single track and it is my least favourite on the album, it is going all AC/DC and even AC/DC in industrial metal suit is too much AC/DC for me, still it is quite good though. The album’s all tracks are of a real high quality and I could ramble about them all for days and days but that would not make you as readers any happier (not that this review will make you happier anyway), therefore I just say that they are all good and mention less than half by name. The ending track called Season of the Reaper is also just a wonderful track and it is also a brilliant ending. It is calm, not really epic but still epic if you catch my drift which I can see by looking at your face that you are not. Anyway, a really good ending, that kind of ending that make you want to hear it again, and again.

For all you wishing it would be a James Bond kind of album, you will not be happy as it is not that. For all the rest of you who did not want anything Bondish, you will be happy. It is one of those hat tipping albums.


Label - Nuclear Blast
Three similar bands: Hypocrisy/Ennio Morricone/I Suffer Incorperated
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm