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Arch Enemy
Doomsday Machine
August 2005
Released: 2005, Century Media
Rating: 1.0/5
Reviewer: MetalGeorge

Ah…if only I could give negative scores… The metal force formerly known as Arch Enemy has offered further disgrace upon their once proud name by releasing a fetid batch of tunes entitled DOOMSDAY MACHINE. Following up the almost equally squalor-ridden ANTHEMS OF REBELLION, this lp definitely (in my opinion, at least) severs all ties between the band and it’s old fan base by catering even more to the plague that is the New Wave of American Heavy Metal.



Yes indeed, forget all about any semblance of songwriting or passion: this one’s all about the cash. DOOMSDAY MACHINE wallows in the mud of American-ized, metalcore loving riffage that has made stars of bands like As I Lay Dying, and then proceeds to get it’s creative tires stuck in said mud via an insistent (and insipid) obsession with midtempo grooves.



While the talent of guitarists Michael and Chris Amott is undeniable-as witnessed by their mighty work in Spiritual Beggars and Armageddon-the nagging fact which remains is that any worthwhile idea they come up with is immediately shot down in flames by the obnoxious and annoying voice of Angela Gossow. Literally drowning in studio effects and trickery, Ms. Gossow’s attempts at making these songs her own fails each and every time, her vocals fading into the background, almost as an afterthought to the criminal metal mistakes perpetrated by her bandmates.



While this review may seem unduly harsh, it is brought upon simply due to the fact that I am irate at the sheer freefall one of my formerly favorite acts has undergone over the past couple of years. Where as albums such as BURNING BRIDGES and WAGES OF SIN lead the Heavy Metal charge, DOOMSDAY MACHINE seems content to merely follow in the trodden footsteps of today’s trends and common sounds.



As much as it seems unconceivable that Arch Enemy might be standing in the shadows of acts like Killswitch Engage-whose existence might be put into question without the earlier efforts of Amott and Co-this is exactly what the band is doing, and it’s a damn shame. So sound the death knell for Arch Enemy: their time is over.
Track Listing

1. Enter The Machine (Intro)

2. Taking Back My Soul

3. Nemesis

4. My Apocalypse

5. Carry the Cross

6. I am Legend/Out For Blood

7. Skeleton Dance

8. Hybrids of Steel

9. Machanic God Creation

10. Machtkampf

11. Slaves of Yesterday

Lineup

Michael Amott-Guitars
Chris Amott-guitars
Daniel Erlandsson-Drums
Sharlee D’Angello-bass
Angella Gossow-vocals


Next review: » Arch Enemy - Doomsday Machine
Previous review: » Arch Enemy - Dead Eyes See No Future EP

Arch Enemy
Doomsday Machine
November 2005
Released: 2005, Century Media
Rating: 4.0/5
Reviewer: Evil Rocker

I remember some years ago seeing ARCH ENEMY in Worcester, MA opening for NEVERMORE. At the time they had a different vocalist Johan 'Liiva' Axelsson. Though I had heard some of the material previously on CD I had been so-so on it. The live performance turned out to be quite good. When they switched to Angela Gossow I viewed it more as a publicity stunt to get a hot chick singer who could growl. A novelty indeed! In fact, I have seen them live twice since with Angela singing and she indeed easy on the eyes and somewhat of an oddity with her vocal style.



I was given this CD by a friend and did not anticipate liking it but I gave it a listen. I must say that I find this to be a very good CD, far surpassing my expectations of bland, boring, routine Swedish "melodic death metal". Perhaps the most impressive aspect of this CD is the heavy use of dual guitars and solo's, not something usually in the forefront of this genre. There is a notable METALLICA feel to certain riffs throughout but especially on the track "My Apocalypse". The voice is fairly typical melodic death and not particularly remarkable until you realize this that is a woman singing. The drums are very good and Sharlee D'Angelo's bass is consistent with all of his other projects.



This CD opens with an instrumental opener that feeds into "Taking Back my Soul" which is a so-so track. Track 3 "Nemesis" is the first stand out track of several. The riff structure is heavy and the light interlude at around 3:00 is an excellent touch, too bad they did not extend that a bit longer. "Carry the Cross" is a solid track. Track 6 "I am Legend" has an excellent old school thrash riff to open which sadly gets lost in the middle. The instrumental "Hybrids of Steel" is well placed and shows some of the musical talent of the band. "Mechanical God Creation" is probably my top track overall on this album. This has it all, the nice riffs, a great death growl by Angela and a nice composition. You can again hear some echoes of some old METALLICA riffs and it sounds great. The last track "Slaves of Yesterday" is consistent with the rest of the album and contains a nice riff around two minutes in after a rather average start.



In summary this is well above average melodic death and came as a surprise to me.
Track Listing

1. Taking Back My Soul
2. Nemesis
3. My Apocalypse
4. Carry The Cross
5. I Am Legend / Out For Blood
6. Skeleton Dance
7. Hybrids Of Steel
8. Mechanic God Creation
9. Machtkampf
10. Slaves Of Yesterday

Lineup

Angela Gossow – Vocals
Michael Amott – Guitars
Chrsitopher Amott – Guitars
Sharlee D'Angelo – Bass
Daniel Erlandsson - Drums


Next review: » Arch Enemy - Khaos Legions
Previous review: » Arch Enemy - Dead Eyes See No Future EP





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