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   IN FLAMES
Soundtrack To Your Escape
2004
Nuclear Blast
http://www.inflames.com


rating: 4/5

1. F(r)Iend
2. The Quiet Place
3. Dead Alone
4. Touch Of Red
5. Like You Better Dead
6. My Sweet Shadow
7. Evil In A Closet
8. In Search For I
9. Borders And Shading
10. Superhero Of The Computer Rage
11. Dial 595-Escape
12. Bottled

A full two years have passed since the oddly received "Reroute To Remain" and now the ever pushing forward In Flames bring to us "Soundtrack To Your Escape". As is the case with the band in general, as well as their musical output, people are either going to love this album or use the CD as a coaster while forcing Vader through the speakers at peak volume. Yes I know, Vader is no place near In Flames in terms of musical style, but the comparison is valid insomuch as both bands have stuck to their guns in their chosen form. From inception, In Flames has been a band to push the envelope of what is an acceptable sound for melodic death metal (to someone, somewhere, that categorization means something I'm sure), consistently reinventing themselves and their style as writers and arrangers of some of the most God's honest beautiful music known to man. With that said, the last two years have also brought us Passenger, which plain made me just want to pass out. However, the foray into Swedish tinged nu metal is not without merit, as "Soundtrack To Your Escape" is just that: an album with as many moods as the Geek (you're famous twice baby!) and more twists and turns than a labyrinth.

"F(r)iend" starts the album off nicely with a nod to the slightly chunkier stylings of majority of "Reroute...", admonishing those who are false in any way, shape, or form. From there, the album's first single "The Quiet Place" finds Anders in full on scream mode with a rhythm section set up to crack skulls. And things get weirder from there. Snippets of electronica, acoustic interludes, semi spoken word passages, all these things go towards creating a most visceral auditory experience unmatched by anything to come out this year so far for what In Flames represent. The defining moment seems to come in tandem, with "Evil In A Closet" and "In Search For I" being about as sappy as metal is allowed to get, heartfelt balladry to snap your neck to. "Soundtrack To Your Escape" is what In Flames has graced us with this year, so listen hard and listen well, they just might not be the "sellouts" that some have labelled them as.

submitted by Nathan 19.12.2004

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