I kind of thought I would know what I was getting with an UNLEASHED album as now on to this twelfth album in their 26 year career they have never strayed far from trve course they sail from the home waters of Swedish Death metal.
Whats striking with this though is a crystal clear production enhancing super tight playing that raises them from the more HM2 filthiness of some of their comrades. Indeed it is more akin to the melodic death polish of later AT THE GATES than the murky origins of the scene. Also evident in opener “A New Day Will Rise” is the essence of a swirl and a reel as they have always extolled and exemplified their Viking heritage, but this is just a flavour within something more solid as opposed to those who now trade exclusively within the drinking and jigging niche subgenre.
Although they could be angling to soundtrack a new Thor film.
Great growled choruses punctuate and hook the songs, who cannot raise a smile and shout along to “Let the hammers fly” and “Where is you god now?” ?. “The Bolt Thrower” with its reference to “The Master of War” must surely be a tribute nod to the Coventry war machine of the same moniker, the title track almost grinds along as their version of an “Orgasmatron” style epic, there is lots of genre familiarity here that is pleasing if not particularly breaking new ground.
Sometimes I felt the songs were overextended and could have been trimmed to more savage shorter beasts but having seen them live before I would look forward to a future opportunity and hearing these new songs blasted out too.