Released: 2008, Stand and Deliver Records
Reviewer: Robert Williams
Los Angeles, California based melodic death thrashers Flatline open up their third full length album PAVE THE WAY sounding like the logical modern progression of what Pantera circa 2009 might have sounded like. Not sure if he was aiming for it or not but vocalist Travis Johnson at times is a dead ringer for Phil Anselmo and the duo of Randy Weitzel and Joe Paulo Guerra definitely have that Dimebag groove oriented metal in their sound, albeit in a slightly more melodic styled fashion. Best examples of these comparisons being album opener "Blessed By Death" fourth track "Dying Breed" and especially on the seventh number "Deleted"
On "The Passing" the listener is greeted with very modern, slightly progressive sounding guitar lead work. This song has pretty melodic guitar passages and some neat diminished chords thrown in for good measure. At first I was a bit confused as to where the melodic death element of the group's sound came into play "The Passing" being the answer to my call.
Logan Mader formerly of Machine Head was enlisted to mix and master the album and does a fine job in that respect whereas Flatline guitarist Randy Weitzel shines as producer of the album. Sonically this all sounds really professional and is a crisp, clean and heavy mix.
Stand and Deliver Records have included an enhanced music video for the song "The Generations Fall" which features the shadowy figures of the fivepiece band headbanging as they play their given instruments against a blood red canvassed backdrop. Not the most creative of music videos, but bonus content is just that. Take it or leave it.
Flatline is definitely a talented bunch and I will look forward to hearing this band progress in the future.