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Reroute to Remain

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  • This album seems to have disappointed a lot of In Flames’ more passionate fans (some have even used the term “sellout,” which is a debate I really don’t want to get into). However, I don’t really see what the problem is. I find this album to be In Flames all the way, and not much of a departure from “Colony” or “Clayman” at all. I really think a band as skilled and creative as In Flames would have a hard time making an album I didn’t like. If there is one thing this album is, it’s infectious, especially by metal standards. It contains some Swedish-style riffs and melodies that can get caught in your head for days (I’ve had that experience myself). Although In Flames may have softened their sound a bit since their early days, there are still some really aggressive moments, and some top-notch songwriting. The opening title track, “Drifter,” and “Egonomic” contain some of the band’s heaviest riffing, and some of Anders’s harshest vocals (at least lately) before getting melodic in the choruses. “System” is a somewhat experimental song that expertly mixes rousing speed metal with some softer elements. “Dawn of a New Day” has a folkish sound that sounds a bit out of place at first, but it provides a nice interlude in the middle of the album. And yes, “Cloud Connected” and “Black and White” DO sound a bit nu-metalish, but I still think they have that In Flames stamp on them, and with their abilities they make the songs work. I’m not really a nu-metal hater anyway, so I don’t have as much of a problem with these songs as some might.Anyway, this is in my opinion a very strong album, in spite of what some naysayers may believe. In Flames have shown themselves to be masters of mixing heaviness and melody, and harsh and clean vocals, and “Reroute to Remain” is no exception. They’re not really a melodic death metal band anymore, but in this case I choose not to lament what was but to enjoy what is. Some of the best metal of 2002 is on here.

    Posted on January 30, 2010