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  1. #1
    Senior Member All-Star CayugaPosse's Avatar
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    Jan 2004

    The gauntlet has been laid down for 2013, an all time classic album...

    Welcome to my review of Soilwork's "The Living Infinite".

    I've said on here before I consider the best heavy metal album of all time to be 2007's "The Blackening" by Machine Head. This isn't that good, but it might be my favourite album I've listened to since spinning that disc.

    I'm a sucker for melodic metal if it's done well(see All That Remains' latest album for a showcase of how it's done poorly). This year we get arguably 3 of the kings of melodic metal all releasing new albums, with Trivium coming off a few very strong albums and set to release a new one at some point this year, Killswitch Engage welcoming back Jesse Leach and(judging from the single they released) getting right back to the classic Killswitch Engage sound that made "Alive or Just Breathing" and "End of Heartache" two all time classics in the genre.

    Finally, we get Soilwork, the kings of melodic death metal, who have barely stepped a foot wrong in their careers, albums like "Natural Born Chaos", "Figure Number Five", "Stabbing the Drama", and 2010's "The Panic Broadcast" have been pretty universal successes, and the band have long been a personal favourite of mine. It felt like somewhere from this entire genre of melodic metal we were bound to get a true classic that stands out from all other albums in the genre and shows just what this brand of music can be at its very best.

    "The Living Infinite" is melodic metal at it's very best. Quite possibly now my favourite album ever from that offset of heavy metal, and one of my all time favourite albums after merely a couple go arounds. 2 discs. 20 tracks. Nothing but brilliance.

    "The Panic Broadcast" lightly teased some progressiveness, but this is at times overwhelmingly, relentlessly progressive. There's a frantic pace to so many of the tracks that flow through tempo changes everywhere at times the album can be hard to keep up with. Almost every single song flows directly to the next one in some way, there are very few pauses, very few breathers through the run time of the disc.

    Sylvain Coudret and David Andersson have a field day on many of the songs, and Bjorn "Speed" Strid continues to mature as a vocalist and has a whole heap of standout moments over the runtime, but by far the star of the show here is Dirk Verbeuren on drums. Listen to a track like the opener "Spectrum of Eternity", or "Tongue" and realize he may be set to etch his name alongside some of the true greats in the world of heavy metal behind a drum kit.

    There are a ton of standout tracks to sift through, but here's my narrowed down best of the best, the opener "Spectrum of Eternity" is an absolute monster way to start the album off(link to the song found below). "The Living Infinite I" is another massive standout with some absolutely great guitar work by Coudret and Andersson. "Long Live the Misanthrope" coupled with it's "intro" track "Entering Aeons" is instantly my favourite Soilwork track of all time.

    Who knows what comes next for Soilwork after seemingly completely re-inventing themselves here into something more progressive, more adventerous, but with the same explosiveness as ever.

    I've long been a fan of the melodic metal "structure"(scream verse/sing chorus), but I can certainly see why people criticize it as unimaginative, especially when repeated over the course of an entire disc. The Living Infinite suffers from exactly none of that, the song structures are all over the place, there is no repetitive concern here, and it serves them massively bridging out in every direction to avoid sounding stale at any point.

    It's possible I'm still slightly hungry after a fairly weak 2012 for great music, but I just really genuinely think Soilwork's unleashed a real masterpiece on us. It won't make believers of anyone who's never liked the band, but if you ever have there's something here for you. This is Soilwork on steroids and cranked up to 11 for an hour and a half, and this now sets an absurdly high bar for either Killswitch Engage, Trivium, or frankly any other heavy metal band from any other style of metal to try to live up to.

    Last edited by CayugaPosse; 02-21-2013 at 12:45 AM.

  2. #2
    The Original K.I.N.G. Hall of Famer King_Killah's Avatar
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    Mar 2004
    Wherever I want to be!
    Wow.... In a non-Testament year, its open for AOTY and its open to kick off early with nominees! Nice write-up!
    The Best there is, The Best there was, The BEST THERE EVER WILL BE..... King Killah!

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