"Dead Eyes See No Future" EP (Century Media; 2004)

Reviewed by Mike SOS

A holdover release of sorts, Arch Enemy's latest EP groups together three covers, some live tracks, and the band's latest single for all those clamoring for more of Angela Gossow and crew's Swedish metal surprise. 

Running through songs by Megadeth, Carcass (Michael Amott's former clan) and Manowar, in addition to pristine, stunning live renditions of "We Will Rise," "Burning Angel," and "Heart of Darkness" that rival the original studio recordings, you simply can't get more metal on an EP than Arch Enemy has managed to include on "Dead Eyes See No Future."

Hopefully, this carryover release can satisfy the fans enough until a new studio album is unleashed. If you're curious about the fuss or an ardent fan, this is a must have. 

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"Wages of Sin" (Century Media)

Reviewed by TBJ

I don't know why I took so damn long to write a review for this CD. Well, here it is, finally on American shores, Arch Enemy's long awaited follow-up to "Burning Bridges." What can I say? This album just blows you away from start to finish. And did I mention there's a really fine looking woman fronting the band now? 

Her name is Angela Gossow, and, mark my words, this woman screams Rock Star and a half. She oozes attitude, which is something a lot of bands lack these days (even Arch Enemy itself in the past). She growls, she sneers, she just might kill you with that wicked look she gives, and she's very talented to boot. 

The album itself sounds fresh, heavy and very aggressive. For those uninitiated, think of Heartwork-Era Carcass, mixed in with a little old-school and new-school metal. There are awesome guitar solos, unbelievable drums, and pounding bass all over this disc. From opener "Enemy Within," to closer "Lament of a Mortal Soul," you just can't believe what these five people have conjured up. 

Angela's lyrics grab you, and Chris and Mike's interplay is their best yet. They remind me of Murray/Smith in that one is the speedy picker and the other is the soulful, melodic soloist. How can you go wrong with the guy that helped make Carcass the gods they are (and always will be)? 

Each song is very different from the one before it and it would be impossible to dissect each one (although I've listened to this so many times I might just do that some day). "Enemy Within" is power metal dipped in a little black metal sauce, "Burning Angel" is Megadeth-meets-Carcass in its classic riffage. "Heart of Darkness" reminds me a lot of "No Love Lost" from 'Heartwork." "Ravenous" is by far the best fucking melodic death metal song I have ever heard - I mean, it just makes you want to eat a two year old kid for dinner! And I've heard this song a thousand times and the feeling doesn't go away! The way Angela's vocals intertwine with the speedy riffs and fast as hell double-bass ... DAMN!!

All in all, this album is a classic. I doubt any band will top this release, (Maybe DT's "Damage Done" will match it). If you like power metal, black metal, death metal or, hell, if you just like METAL, you have to buy this. It's a sure bet you will love it.

Arch Enemy: Angela - Vocals; Mike and Chris - guitars; Sharlee - Bass; Daniel - drums.

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"Burning Bridges" (Century Media)

Reviewed by TBJ

What Mr. Amott and company have produced with "Burning Bridges" is the album their previous release, "Stigmata," should have been. This album is as heavy as the last but a new sense of control overruns the proceedings. There is a greater emphasis here on hooks and melody. The fast stuff is faster and the melodic parts are more pronounced than ever before. The Amott guitar team seems to excel in dual guitar pyrotechnics. Their styles just work so well together; it reminds me of the greatest days of Carcass when Mike and Bill taught the world what melodic death metal was.

Songs such as "Pilgrim" and "Silverwing" contain an inherent "feel" that just screams classic through and through. Their leads sound familiar, but not in a derogatory way. It's more like those melodies hit you so hard you forgot how you could have lived without them.

I thank Arch Enemy for providing us with metal of the best quality and for not being an At the Gates clone, like so many lesser "melodic death metal" bands. It seems Arch Enemy is improving on what Carcass started in "Necrotism" and perfected in "Heartwork."

Arch Enemy is: Mike and Chris Amott - guitars, Johaan Liiva - vocals, Sharlee D'Angelo - bass, and drummer Daniel Erlandsson.

Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2004 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 07 Aug 2023 21:18:43 -0400.