Rating:
N/A
Arch Enemy - Khaos Legions
30 May 2011


Disc I
01. Khaos Overture
02. Yesterday Is Dead And Gone
03. Bloodstained Cross
04. Under Black Flags We March
05. No Gods, No Masters
06. City Of The Dead
07. Through The Eyes Of A Raven
08. Cruelty Without Beauty
09. We Are A Godless Entity
10. Cult Of Chaos
11. Thorns In My Flesh
12. Turn To Dust
13. Vengeance Is Mine
14. Secrets
15. The Zoo [Scorpions cover] [Japanese bonus]
16. Snow Bound [Acoustic version] [Japanese bonus]

Disc II [Kovered In Khaos] [Deluxe/Limited edition bonus]
01. Warning [Discharge cover]
02. Wings Of Tomorrow [Europe cover]
03. The Oath [Kiss cover]
04. The Book Of Heavy Metal [Dream Evil cover]


An open letter to Arch Enemy.


Dear Arch Enemy,

Back where I come from we have this saying; "You can only hate Arch Enemy, if you hate having fun". So obviously I was pretty excited when I heard you were releasing your first studio effort in over six years (unless you want to count the utter abomination that was
Rise Of The Tyrant, which I kind of don't). After a couple of spins though, my excitement gradually turned into concern. Which is why I'm stepping up to lend a helping hand (which I assume was your intent, 'cause I'm just that modest).

Truth be told, I wasn't expecting something cutting-edge in the first place. I mean, you have always been as innovative as this site is called Polka Storm. But
Khaos Legions is just, well, embarrassingly stale. Where did the rebellious character go? Why is it that anything that slightly resembles adventure gets consistently avoided? Is it because some bottled up emotions hinder you from reaching your potential? Why do you keep on recycling all your pet ideas over and over again? Is it a subliminal message to your fans to become more environmentally conscious? So many questions.

Hate to break it to you but everything about the album screams "uninspired". I couldn't even headbang properly because there are just too many downtempo parts... go figure, metal with no headbanging! Are you aware that your songs are so sugary one can scrape cotton candy right off those riffs? Why did you go for the "throw-a-handful-of-shit-to-a-wall-and-see-what-sticks" songwriting formula? You know you can do better than that (remember the "garage days" in that Carcass-band?). Are you suffering from a burn-out? Are you getting old? Am I getting old? Everyone born after 1992 seems to adore you to the point of worship. What's their secret?

And then there are those "plastic" vocals. What's up with that, girl? The bloodthirsty screams with the characteristic throaty rawness made me once believe you had twice the balls most death metal singers could only dream of having. Are you happy with the mainstream finesse that comes with over-polished vocals? Are you?

Maybe you feel like there's no need to take any risks since everything you touch turns instantly into gold. But let me tell you something, your music spawned literally countless of melodic death metal-inspired metalcore offspring that copy Arch Enemy and At The Gates riffs like they're on sale at the 99cent store. Lettuce be serious, this has been done better myriad times before. Look at you, you're losing your mojo! You're back to square one: store-brand Gothenburg metal.

Brutal truth:
Khaos Legions is but a pale shadow of what once was. So for goodness' sake, get your shit together already. Take care of yourself, okay?

Big smooch,
Thryce


Band profile: Arch Enemy
Album: Khaos Legions


 


written by Thryce | 02.06.2011



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Doc Godin - 07.06.2011 at 01:03  
Written by Troy Killjoy on 04.06.2011 at 17:20

Written by Zeh on 04.06.2011 at 15:43

Sounds like they have the same problem as In Flames has. Not the alcohol addiction, I mean lack of inspiration, originality and mainstreamness.

...and probably alcohol addiction.

Actually I interviewed Michael Amott last year and he seemed to put an emphasis on the care he takes with what he puts into his body...Maybe he should get hooked on something?

Hard to say whether I should disregard this review or not. It seems like everyone agrees with it, yet he also bashes Rise Of The Tyrant, which I found to be their best work...Conundrum. I'll probably get off my ass and listen to it in like 5 months or something.
Troy Killjoy - 07.06.2011 at 01:06  
Written by Doc Godin on 07.06.2011 at 01:03

Hard to say whether I should disregard this review or not. It seems like everyone agrees with it, yet he also bashes Rise Of The Tyrant, which I found to be their best work...

I think Rise is slightly better than this (which isn't saying much for me), but if you liked it you'll probably end up giving this a 7 or so.
!J.O.O.E.! - 07.06.2011 at 01:15  
I found this as saccharine and forgettable as Rise, probably slightly more so actually. If I was just getting in melodeath and the like this would probably be a great album to listen to.
neonxaos - 07.06.2011 at 21:38  
Written by Doc Godin on 07.06.2011 at 01:03

Written by Troy Killjoy on 04.06.2011 at 17:20

Written by Zeh on 04.06.2011 at 15:43

Sounds like they have the same problem as In Flames has. Not the alcohol addiction, I mean lack of inspiration, originality and mainstreamness.

...and probably alcohol addiction.

Actually I interviewed Michael Amott last year and he seemed to put an emphasis on the care he takes with what he puts into his body...Maybe he should get hooked on something?

Hard to say whether I should disregard this review or not. It seems like everyone agrees with it, yet he also bashes Rise Of The Tyrant, which I found to be their best work...Conundrum. I'll probably get off my ass and listen to it in like 5 months or something.


Believe me, I could not agree less with this review, but to each his own. I loved Doomsday Machine to bits, and although I find KL to be a less impressive effort, I like it slightly better than Rise. Yeah, it's melodic and even catchy, but that's what I like in my Gothenburg metal, thank you very much I do feel they could have gone further with the material and churned out some more solos and melodic passages that didn't sound THAT similar to the earlier stuff. And I think that although I like the sound of Angela's voice now (I don't understand the "plastic vocals" thing at all), she could really come a long way by trying out some new rhytms and doing some more adventurous stuff - hell, maybe even some clean singing.

Having said that, the album also contains some truy glorious moments and some earth-shattering riffs. It is just a whole lot of fun for me, and I genuinely like it.
EntityOfMalice14 - 13.06.2011 at 01:52  
I really like Arch Enemy, but i can say i don't care if they release another studio album. Rise of the Tyrant had its moments, Really great riffs, but with that said, I cant remember a damn thing about it in particular. They've become very stale indeed. They got plenty of good material from years past, so ill just stick to Anthems of Rebellion and Burning Bridges.
Night Sight - 15.06.2011 at 15:42  
Arch enemy is my favorite band
but this time their new album is really awful
the best albums by arch enemy that was Rise of the Tyrant and Domsday Machine in my opiniion
Spanishkiller - 05.07.2011 at 23:12  
They are definately not as inspired as when they released Bruning Bridges or Wages of Sin.
sepulkisser - 19.11.2011 at 06:24  
This album is AWESOME... I give a big 10!!!

Like any album that recorded Michael Ammott!!
AngelofDeth - 27.04.2012 at 04:53  
Written by Doc Godin on 07.06.2011 at 01:03

Hard to say whether I should disregard this review or not. It seems like everyone agrees with it, yet he also bashes Rise Of The Tyrant, which I found to be their best work...Conundrum.

Rise of the Tyrant is one of my favorite worx by AE as well but I also find this album terrible.
Doc Godin - 27.04.2012 at 04:58  
Written by AngelofDeth on 27.04.2012 at 04:53

Written by Doc Godin on 07.06.2011 at 01:03

Hard to say whether I should disregard this review or not. It seems like everyone agrees with it, yet he also bashes Rise Of The Tyrant, which I found to be their best work...Conundrum.

Rise of the Tyrant is one of my favorite worx by AE as well but I also find this album terrible.

Yup. Bought the album against my better judgement a few months ago. It's not very good. Maybe 1 or 2 songs I like.
Nemesis7575 - 27.01.2013 at 05:12  
You reviewers always have something negative to say about Arch Enemy. Perhaps it is your taste in music that is bad. They are the ONLY band i listen that i find every song, every album, every riff amazing! Michael Amott is a musical genius. All the "experimental and technical" stuff on the market is crap.
I like alot of metal but there's no one that's been as consistent at putting out good material as Arch Enemy. No one!
BoxCar Willy - 18.03.2014 at 05:05  
Written by Nemesis7575 on 27.01.2013 at 05:12

Perhaps it is your taste in music that is bad.

Definitely this.
!J.O.O.E.! - 18.03.2014 at 12:44  
Written by Nemesis7575 on 27.01.2013 at 05:12

Perhaps it is your taste in music that is bad. They are the ONLY band i listen that i find every song, every album, every riff amazing! Michael Amott is a musical genius. All the "experimental and technical" stuff on the market is crap.
I like alot of metal but there's no one that's been as consistent at putting out good material as Arch Enemy. No one!

Arch Enemy have been writing the same album for over a decade now, only it gets more and more watered down with sugary saccharine and sickly sweet melodies. They may be consistent but they're anything but good in recent times.
!J.O.O.E.! - 18.03.2014 at 12:45  
Written by BoxCar Willy on 18.03.2014 at 05:05

Definitely this.

You just made me quote someone from over a year ago thinking it was a new comment. Thanks.
BoxCar Willy - 18.03.2014 at 14:23  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 18.03.2014 at 12:45

Written by BoxCar Willy on 18.03.2014 at 05:05

Definitely this.

You just made me quote someone from over a year ago thinking it was a new comment. Thanks.

My bad haha, I hardly ever look at post dates.
deadone - 19.03.2014 at 01:04  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 18.03.2014 at 12:44

Written by Nemesis7575 on 27.01.2013 at 05:12

Perhaps it is your taste in music that is bad. They are the ONLY band i listen that i find every song, every album, every riff amazing! Michael Amott is a musical genius. All the "experimental and technical" stuff on the market is crap.
I like alot of metal but there's no one that's been as consistent at putting out good material as Arch Enemy. No one!

Arch Enemy have been writing the same album for over a decade now, only it gets more and more watered down with sugary saccharine and sickly sweet melodies. They may be consistent but they're anything but good in recent times.



I think a lot of bands are in this boat these days - e.g. Kataklysm, Amon Amarth, Devil Driver, Soulfly, Evile etc etc and pretty much anything major label Power Metal.

It's wierd that there is no evolution at all especially with Kataklysm and Soulfly who changed a lot in the past.

Even Cannibal Corpse display more evolution over time than a lot of less extreme bands,

I have a conspiracy theory though:

The labels are actively pushing bands to fit into certain pre-established niches.

In the past bands evolving or changing has resulted in bad commercial results for the labels with fans refusing to buy new stuff from bands that have changed.

Hence the labels want to maximise revenue and direct the band to stay in a holding pattern soundwise in order to create a specific niche.


The labels often have a massive influence on bands - I remember guys from Carcass talking about how at one Earache meeting the execs were discussing how some extreme band improved their marketability by hiring a stylist.

And you do occassionally get other snippets in interviews that highlight label influence when bands talk about "how the label was great in terms of support but not trying to influence the artistic direction."

That bands think it noteworthy to mention lack of label interference seems to imply heavy interference most of the time.
!J.O.O.E.! - 19.03.2014 at 06:40  
Written by deadone on 19.03.2014 at 01:04

I think a lot of bands are in this boat these days - e.g. Kataklysm, Amon Amarth, Devil Driver, Soulfly, Evile etc etc and pretty much anything major label Power Metal.

It's wierd that there is no evolution at all especially with Kataklysm and Soulfly who changed a lot in the past.

Even Cannibal Corpse display more evolution over time than a lot of less extreme bands,

I have a conspiracy theory though:

The labels are actively pushing bands to fit into certain pre-established niches.

In the past bands evolving or changing has resulted in bad commercial results for the labels with fans refusing to buy new stuff from bands that have changed.

Hence the labels want to maximise revenue and direct the band to stay in a holding pattern soundwise in order to create a specific niche.


The labels often have a massive influence on bands - I remember guys from Carcass talking about how at one Earache meeting the execs were discussing how some extreme band improved their marketability by hiring a stylist.

And you do occassionally get other snippets in interviews that highlight label influence when bands talk about "how the label was great in terms of support but not trying to influence the artistic direction."

That bands think it noteworthy to mention lack of label interference seems to imply heavy interference most of the time.

Possibly. It's hard, if not impossible, to know for sure. It's seems there's 4 roads bands go down: Stay the same: accused of repetition / not evolving and receive poor critical reception (Arch Enemy); stay the same: get called consistent, still considered good (Bolt Thrower); evolve toward the mainstream: become disliked (Metallica); evolve into something else and / or something heavier, results vary (Enslaved: good, !T.O.O.H.!: bad).
deadone - 19.03.2014 at 13:55  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 19.03.2014 at 06:40


Possibly. It's hard, if not impossible, to know for sure. It's seems there's 4 roads bands go down: Stay the same: accused of repetition / not evolving and receive poor critical reception (Arch Enemy); stay the same: get called consistent, still considered good (Bolt Thrower); evolve toward the mainstream: become disliked (Metallica); evolve into something else and / or something heavier, results vary (Enslaved: good, !T.O.O.H.!: bad).


The bizarre thing is there's not even minute change in the "non-evolutionary" bands. The sound is frozen at some point that was deemed successful ala Kataklysm who are stuck in Shadows and Dust or Arch Enemy who are stuck in Wages of Sin or Evile being stuck in Enter The Grave. You end up with these completely pointless albums that don't even have the benefit of interesting song writing.



In the past you had bands that were considered "stuck in the mud" but then there was some sort of change through time, no matter how glacial.

As stated Cannibal Corpse changed more - initially more Thrashy then more brutal and then more techical.


Even Bolt Thrower changed after completely exhausting themselves with Mercenary - Those Once Loyal ramped up the groove and added a adopted a different approach to production. And then the obvious changes from In Battle There Is No Law to Realms of Chaos to Warmaster to IVth Crusade/For Victory/Mercenary. Honor, Valor, Pride doesn't exist in my opinion.
Monolithic - 20.03.2014 at 10:24  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 19.03.2014 at 06:40

Possibly. It's hard, if not impossible, to know for sure. It's seems there's 4 roads bands go down: Stay the same: accused of repetition / not evolving and receive poor critical reception (Arch Enemy); stay the same: get called consistent, still considered good (Bolt Thrower); evolve toward the mainstream: become disliked (Metallica); evolve into something else and / or something heavier, results vary (Enslaved: good, !T.O.O.H.!: bad).

And it's kinda weird that no matter what road they choose, music fans who are dissatisfied are accused of "not understanding" the band.
deadone - 21.03.2014 at 00:21  
Written by Monolithic on 20.03.2014 at 10:24

And it's kinda weird that no matter what road they choose, music fans who are dissatisfied are accused of "not understanding" the band.



Mind you I don't see the point of following bands who haven't done an album I liked in ages.


I actually learned this from bands like Metallica and In Flames both of whom changed into something I didn't like.

But why bitch about ReLoad not being Master of Puppets Mk II or Sound of a Playground Fading not being Jester Race Mk II?

Instead I ignore the albums I don't like and stick with the ones I do. Helps keep the stress levels down!
Monolithic - 21.03.2014 at 00:50  
Written by deadone on 21.03.2014 at 00:21

Mind you I don't see the point of following bands who haven't done an album I liked in ages.
I actually learned this from bands like Metallica and In Flames both of whom changed into something I didn't like.
But why bitch about ReLoad not being Master of Puppets Mk II or Sound of a Playground Fading not being Jester Race Mk II?
Instead I ignore the albums I don't like and stick with the ones I do. Helps keep the stress levels down!

I don't bitch that much, either. Instead, I just feel that even if you respect their "new" identity, you really wouldn't consider their output as "extraordinary" within the framework they were hoping to instill. Not much to say on Arch Enemy's case, though. I feel as if it's enjoyable for a gig or two, to lose yourself to live music.
deadone - 21.03.2014 at 01:05  
Written by Monolithic on 21.03.2014 at 00:50

I don't bitch that much, either. Instead, I just feel that even if you respect their "new" identity, you really wouldn't consider their output as "extraordinary" within the framework they were hoping to instill. Not much to say on Arch Enemy's case, though. I feel as if it's enjoyable for a gig or two, to lose yourself to live music.



Totally agree. Arch Enemy never changed their sound though IMO - it still sounds like Liiva era stuff but with modern over production and lacking in energy. It also sounds contrived due to daft "rebel" lyrics.

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