Dark Tranquility

Label: Century Media
Three similar bands: In Flames/Soilwork/As I Lay Dying
Rating: HHHHHHH (6/7)
Reviewer: Caj Källmalm
1. For Broken Words
2. The Science of Noise
3. Uniformity
4. The Silence in Between
5. Apathetic
6. What Only You Know
7. Endtime Hearts
8. State of Trust
9. Weight of the End
10. None Becoming

Mikael Stanne – vocals
Martin Henriksson – bass guitar, rhythm guitar
Niklas Sundin – lead guitar, album artwork
Anders Jivarp – drums
Martin Brändström – keyboards

Skydancer (1993)
The Gallery (1995)
The Mind's I (1997)
Projector (1999)
Haven (2000)
Damage Done (2002)
Character (2005)
Fiction (2007)
We Are the Void (2010)


Jens Bogren – mixing

Released 2013-05-27
Reviewed 2013-07-19

century media

Actually, this album wasn’t that different compared to the earlier Dark Tranquillity albums as I first thought. Sure, it has its differences, perhaps even being a bit innovatory and probably something Dark Tranquillity haven’t putted together before. Seen to the album as a whole, that is. Looking at the songs seperately it’s not that different, though...

The differences are that it’s less clean vocals, less electronics and also heavier. Also, one of the members has left the band since the last time (Daniel Antonsson) and all of these things makes up for an album that as a whole feels pretty different compared to both ‘We Are The Void’ but mostly the albums between (and including) ‘Haven’ and ‘Fiction’. However, as we examine the songs seperately it feels like almost all of them feels as if they came from exactly these albums. I’ll soon take you on a journey through the album looking at the songs seperately but first, to those of you who - if there are any of you - that actually hasn’t heard this band before I’ll just describe the band shortly so you’ll have a foundation to relate to. Dark Tranquillity are one of the three big inventors of the Gothenburg death metal and hence they play Gothenburg death metal (which is melodic death metal, basically). If you need further description you have more reviews on your left.

The first track begins pretty calm and slow with scaled down guitars before heading in to a lead guitar stick before Stanne joins in with his dark growling. This is one of the slowest tracks and it has a kind of dark, dystopic feel to it, like a cave hidden under ground. The second song is pretty different though - the tempo is faster, the sound not as hard and I actually feel the song reminds me a bit of a concentration camp during the second world war during some kind of hectic moment. Like the minute before the guards will search through the belongings of the “concentrated”. The third song is the first real flirst with the past though and you could listen to it yourself down in the bottom of the review while we continues with the fourth song - The Silence In Between. This is a track that reminds me very much of ‘Damage Done’ and actually I’d probably guessed it was from that album first if I didn’t know better.

Apathetic follows after that and that starts very similar to a ‘Fiction’ song, but somehow darker and when we get to the chorus it actually feels like Dark Tranquillity has become a metalcore band but on a Coca Cola Light diet. The sixth track is called What only You Know and that’s the first song with proper electronics in it and also the first track where Stanne sings most of the song with clean vocals (except for the sticks and chorus, funny enough as that’s usually the parts most death bands do with clean vocals if they use them). This is definitely one of my favorite songs on this album with those high pitched, almost screaming keyboards going on and the piano-like tones in the verses. And then they throw in the complete opposite to this song in the next track as Endtime Hearts is a fast, angry song with tanker-like drums in the verses. The only similarites between the songs are the heavy use of electronics in the choruses.

The last three songs are called State Of Trust, Weight Of The End and None Becoming and they are all part of my favorite portfolio from this album. These are all more electronic and have more of that sweet mix between heavy, melodic, angry, beautiful, hard, slow, death metalic, growls, clean vocals and fast like Dark Tranquillity has been for the last fifteen or so years. This is the reason they’ve had such a success with the grades on Hallowed - this is the reason why I love them, but we still get something new from them because they’re not quite like the “old” Dark Tranquillity tunes... just a bit more like them. I feel Dark Tranquillity realle try new things out on this album while still staying in the field they’ve been in the past.

Old fans, and - as I’ve hinted already - I’m one of them, will most certaintly like this album (at least I do) and new fans will get a foot in to the complete sound of Dark Tranquillity - not just this album without being left with a feeling of having heard it all. If you like this, you’ll probably like the rest of Dark tranquillity. If you like the rest of Dark tranquillity, you’ll probably like this as well. Quality-wise this meets all Dark Tranquillity standards (which is very high) and song-wise it’s the same thing. A successfull work then? Absolutely! Dark tranquillity keeps constructing great music.




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