• Business as usual - A review of Soilwork's ''Death Resonance''

    Soilwork - Death Resonance (2016)

    ''Death Resonance'' is a compilation record consisting of two new songs and thirteen rare tracks released as bonus tracks in Asia and especially in Japan over the past eleven years. The final result offers the typical Soilwork sound and here lies the problem.

    Soilwork is a band that experiments, polarizes and risks a lot less than genre colleagues like In Flames that have always continued to develop. The band has its signature sound and never tries to stray away from it. A typical Soilwork tune is four minutes long. It has a constant melancholic and oppressive atmosphere. It features up-tempo melodic death metal riffs and harsh vocals in the verses. On the other side, one gets a slower, more harmonious chorus with cleaner vocal sections. Most of the lyrics deal with inner struggles and interpersonal difficulties. This description pretty much fits to all of the songs on this release no matter how old they are. Even though the songs on this compilation are mostly bonus tracks, they perfectly portray what makes Soilwork so frustratingly unspectacular. Soilwork's music is so predictable that it becomes quickly bland, boring and exchangeable. 

    The music is neither great nor awful and that's maybe the worst thing for a group of artists. I have never heard anyone say that Soilwork is an abominable group. But I have never heard anyone who has cited this band as his or her favorite group of all times either. The only people who I could see purchasing this release are strictly conservative fans who want to hear business as usual and complete their extensive genre collection. The artistic quality alone is too weak to convince anyone to buy this plain average output. This record is so consistently average that it's impossible to point out particular songs.

    In the end, this release is only recommendable to faithful genre collectors and conservative fans. Anyone else should simply overlook this record and not spend any money on it, not even at a reduced price. If you really insist on getting an introduction to the band and want to own just one record, go with the live package entitled ''Live in the Heart of Helsinki'' which was released last year.

    Final rating: 50%

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