I don’t think that Arch Enemy needs an introduction, since they have stated their position as one of the best death metal acts in the world with their latest studio album ANTHEMS OF REBELLION in 2003. The album was followed by endless touring and now in await of their new album they’re releasing an EP to still the fans’ craving.
The EP contains about thirty minutes of music from their last album. The tracks are “Dead Eyes See No Future” followed by three live songs taken from a show in Paris called “Burning Angel”, “Heart Of Darkness” and “We Will Rise.” They have also done covers of three tracks which are “Symphony Of Destruction” by Megadeth, “Kill With Power” by Manowar and “Incarnated Solvent Abuse” by Michael Amott’s old band Carcass. There is also an enhanced video of the track “We Will Rise” featured.
All of the production is made by Andy Sneap except for the cover tracks that’s been produced by Richard Bengtsson (lead singer in Last Tribe) at his studio Slaughterhouse in Halmstad during January 2004. All of the songs are mixed by Sneap. There’s nothing much to complain about when it comes to the production part. As always, Sneap knows exactly what to do.
Then we have come to the most important part, how does this sound? I haven’t reviewed the first song because you all can read about that in the CD review the Metal Rules team did for ANTHEMS OF REBELLION. The other three songs are taken from a club/place called Elyseé Montmarte in Paris. The band sounds really tight and they also sound a bit more melodic live compared to the album. Angela Gossow sounds just as angry live as on the album and you can mistake her for being a man when it comes to the vocals. She impresses, as usual. She doesn’t talk so much between the songs, she just dedicates “We Will Rise” to the band’s fans and after that it’s just straight ahead. The band does three stunning live tracks and it doesn’t sound like they have done anything like added or taken away something in the post-production because you can hear that one of the Amott brothers have problems with his guitar at one point. I have witnessed the band live and I can assure you that they are as tight and as well-rehearsed live as they sound on this album and besides that all of them are competent musicians too so what can possibly go wrong then. The album ends with the video for “We Will Rise” which is a simple pure good-looking video. It’s a “real” video and not a shooting of a live gig as so many band does. And even the cover screams that this is Arch Enemy and that is a good sign.
The first cover song is the Megadeth track where they have slowed down the tempo and have managed the song to sound like one of their own songs. I would even like to go as far as to say that this version is better than the original. Gossow and the Amott brothers have the biggest part in the soundscape.
The next cover song is taken from Manowar and here the music is heavy, fast and brutal death metal. The speed has risen and the only slower part is the chorus. I’m not a fan of Manowar but I think that this sounds really good and that’s probably because it’s Arch Enemy who does it and not the original band. The last track out is the cover of the Carcass song. It’s quite complicated death metal with a lot of tempo changes and a lot of double bass pedals. The lead vocals and the riffing guitars are at the top of the mix.
This EP is really a great substitute in wait of the new studio album. The only negative thing is that maybe it’s time for the band to release a live album with Angela behind the mic so that everyone who hasn’t seen the band live have the opportunity to hear what Angela sounds like live. It’s a real experience, believe me.
All of you who like this band ought to go out and by this EP straight away. All of the songs are killer tracks. There isn’t a bad track on the EP and also the cover works really well.
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