CD review AMORPHIS ‘Queen of Time’

(9/10) That 12 records and 27 years in metal doesn’t equal routine and repetition, that is something Amorphis proves with their newest album ‘Queen of Time’ in a way that doesn’t leave room for discussion. The Finns add these days with ‘Queen of Time’ a new longplayer to their discography that is as impressive as records like the legendary ‘Tales From the Thousand Lakes’ has been earlier in time.

No doubt, times changes and Amorphis evolved. It’s this growth and progression that makes each new album of the Finnish sextet to an exciting release and expectations have been high when it comes to this highly anticipated new longplayer that follows the 2015 smasher ‘Under the Red Sky’.  ‘Queen of Time’ delivers.

In total ten new songs showcasing a band that reaches another peak in their successful career.  ‘Queen of Time’ is the perfect combination of earlier death metal roots with deep growls and more currently added bombastic melodies with a folk expression. In general the longplayer became a bit more heavy than the predecessor, something that benefits ‘Queen of Time’ very well.

The opener is a song you might have heard already since ‘The Bee’ was released earlier in time as a video to promote the album. What follows ‘The Bee’ are nine additional anthems, beginning with the beautiful ‘Message in the Amber’. Calmer sounds build a certain counterpart to the heavy eruptions that are also a substantial part of this sonic beauty. The starting triple is rounded off by the bombastic ‘Daughter of Hate’ and it’s the unusual saxophone part that add a new nuance to this highlight. These three songs in their totality provide an excellent overview of what to expect from this mind-blowing new album.

The rest of “Queen of Time’ can easily compete with the impressive start of the album. The melodic “Wrong Direction’ with its folk elements is a real treat for your ears and the same goes for ‘We Accursed’, the latter being with some deep growls and might riffpower.

What impresses with Amorphis’ new longplayer is the constant level of musical excellence that acts like a common thread. There is not one weak song or dull moment on this album and some embedded twists provide a constantly returning moment of surprise.

Last but not least ‘Queen of Time’ includes a duet too. It’s no less than Anneke van Giersbergen (Vuur) that has a guest appearance on ‘Amongst Stars’. Two singers give the song a wider range of possibilities, also considering the fact that singer Tomi Joutsen uses his clean vocals and the growls. It’s a kind of three voice by two singers that gives the track a cinematic expression.

‘Queen of Time’ is a majestic album and Amorphis added another milestone to their already successful career in metal. This longplayer has the potential to end up in the top 5 of any 2018 poll. Excellent.

(9/10)

Tracklist:

  1. The Bee
  2. Message in the Amber
  3. Daughter of Hate
  4. The Golden Elk
  5. Wrong Direction
  6. Heart of the Giant
  7. We Accursed
  8. Grain of Sand
  9. Amongst Stars
  10. Pyres of the Coast

Label: Nuclear Blast

Genre: Melodic Death Metal

Release Date EU: May 18th, 2018

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