Monday, 6 June 2011

CD Review: Anthems Of Rebellion, by Arch Enemy (2003)


Clearly on sweeping creative roll, Arch Enemy follow up the brilliant Wages Of Sin with the outstanding Anthems Of Rebellion. Finding the perfect sweet spot where Angela Gossow's vocals enhance the guitars of brothers Christopher and Michael Amott, the band unleash another set of immaculately constructed, melody-driven death metal tracks, meshing controlled aggression with classical inspiration.

Anthems Of Rebellion opens with a triple blast of greatness. Silent Wars lets loose the most simple yet insanely dominant lead guitar riff, a sparsity of notes used to pacify any protest with devastatingly muscular effect. We Will Rise is more anthemic, but as anthems go it is chillingly effective in organizing all the dishevelled troops into an army of rebellion. And then Dead Eyes See No Future rounds out the opening trilogy with the most sophisticated track on the album, massive drum work from Daniel Erlandsson carrying a most elegant and hypnotic guitar melody to fruition.

Leader Of The Rats carries a menacing threat; End Of The Line proposes a beefy trip to a dangerous power source; and Saints And Sinners ends the album with a searing, slow paced guitar melody that projects nothing but imperious grandeur from the the most towering of medieval castles.

Gossow's work on vocals is a perfect complement to the band's energy behind her, projecting enough power to hold her own without ever overshadowing the music.

Unfortunately, brief mention must be made of the conspicuously poor album cover art, which combines insipid inspiration with childish execution. But it is a small blemish on an otherwise brilliant record: Anthems Of Rebellion confirms the stature of Arch Enemy as one of metal's outstanding bands.

Band:

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


Songlist (ratings out of 10):

1. Tear Down The Walls - n/a (short instrumental)
2. Silent Wars - 10 *see below*
3. We Will Rise - 10
4. Dead Eyes See No Future - 10
5. Instinct - 7
6. Leader Of The Rats - 8
7. Exist To Exit - 7
8. Marching On A Dead End Road - n/a (short instrumental)
9. Despicable Heroes - 7
10. End Of The Line - 8
11. Dehumanization - 7
12. Anthem - n/a (short instrumental)
13. Saints And Sinners - 9

Average: 8.30

Produced, Mixed, Engineered and Mastered by Andy Sneap.

All Ace Black Blog Heavy Metal CD Reviews are here.




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