Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Evergrey - Torn (2008)

While I've never been the hugest fan of Tom S. Englund's vocals, their mid range and emotional edge have always allowed Evergrey to stand out amidst a large crop of same sounding European power and progressive metal bands. Shovel in the band's penchant for chunky, guitar grooves, melodic hooks and synthesizers and they have a rather distinct approach that has created such great albums as In Search of Truth, The Inner Circle and my previous favorite Recreation Day.

It's important to note that I said 'previous', because Torn is pretty much the apex of this band's output so far. A wholly catchy experience, with bone crunching, groovy rhythm guitars on tracks like "Fear" and the bouncy, almost nu-metal "Numb". Yes, the band are not one for interesting song titles here, it's all quite generic in that regard, but do not let that stop you. The album sounds magnificent, each riff driven home with power, each track perfectly structured for Englund's voice. Many highlights, too many. The blazing twin leads of "These Scars". The grooving bridge guitars of "Soaked". The prog metal outbreak of "Still Walk Alone". Yeah, I know, the song titles again...makes it seem like a Godsmack album. Thankfully, it's not.

Evergrey occupy a rather unique niche which appeals to fans of the heavier side of progressive metal (like a Dream Theater if they were nowhere near as complex) and modern power metal. Torn is in my opinion the best they have to offer, so if this sounds hot then it probably is.

Verdict: Win [8/10] (all nights of fallen grace)

No comments: