(Spinefarm Records / 2014)
How are you supposed to follow an album so well received by critics and fans alike, one that made the top places in the charts, including a number one position at the U.S. iTunes Metal Chart? Is there some kind of secret formula or an elaborate dance you have to take part in, before entering the studio and give form to another record and refresh your presence within the global metal metal scene? I’m not in position to know what’s going on when the studio doors close and work gets underway, but judging by the way AMARANTHE’s third release is sounding right now, I’m guessing they have some pretty good insight on the tricks of the trade! This sounds like another winner!
Even if I mentioned the ‘right formula’ as a metaphor, one thing’s for sure, AMARANTHE have developed their sound in such a way we can easily pin point the hard edges they have successfully trimmed and tamed to their advantage. Melodies that sound bigger than life, choruses you will surely remember once the songs are over, riffs that go hand in hand whether you’re a metal fan or a hard rock believer! There’s also the vocal dynamics, divided by no less than 3 different singers, each one with his own approach and delivery, giving every song a strong identity! When all this comes into place, maybe they are compelled to perform that elaborate dance with a secret handshake on the side.
Now, even with the previous success AMARANTHE has had with the previous album, “The Nexus”, this doesn’t mean they’ll hit higher ground with every metal fan around the block, once this new piece, “Massive Addicitive” starts hitting them left and right! There’s an obvious pop sensibility in many of these songs and you can find yourself in a melodic dilemma trying to decide if this is closer to the power metal arrangements or to the radio friendly pop-rock of present days. There’s plenty of ammo to make anyone fire in any direction, if you’re keen to that kind of entertainment, but if you’re just an avid heavy music fan, I’m sure you’ll find something for please your pleasures in the balance between both sides of the fence.
[reviewed by: Rui Marujo]