Mercenary - Metamorphosis review
|Release date:||February 2011|
01. Through The Eyes Of The Devil
02. The Follower
03. In A River Of Madness
05. Velvet Lies
06. In Bloodred Shades
07. Shades Of Grey
08. On The Edge Of Sanity
09. The Black Brigade
10. Vanity For Sale [iTunes bonus]
Of the Scandinavian countries, it is possible to think that Denmark is the country in the least regard. The other countries have sources of renown like the Oslo Accords, The Nobel Prizes, Gothenburg, Sweden even has a sub-genre named after it. Most people who chew tobacco probably couldn't tell you where Copenhagen is, so the best thing going for Denmark is Hamlet, though while being arguably the best play ever written, is about four hundred years old. However, if something is rotten in the state of Denmark, it isn't the metal.
Denmark has great metal, housing acts that are regrettably partially veiled in obscurity, yet do what they do excellently, from progpower quartet Anubis Gate to death/thrash metal group Hatesphere, the acts are consistently very good. At the forefront of the country's metal, though, is the melodeath giants Mercenary.
Mercenary started off their latest album, Metamorphosis, with a small, somewhat intricate keyboard solo, and followed it with a melodic onslaught I wasn't entirely expecting. "Through The Eyes of the Devil" is one of the better songs on the album, and is one of the reasons I always come back for another listen. The tracks often switch off between faster and slower, with "Velvet Lies" being one of the slowest tracks on the album, almost bordering on what could be called a death metal ballad, almost. It wasn't until the eighth track that they ask "are you f**king ready?" by which point you only have two tracks left, but it's one of the great moments on the album.
The best songs on the album, "Through the Eyes of the Devil", "On the Edge of Sanity", and "Incorporate Your Demons", are all faster paced with much heavier riffing consistent through the songs compared to some of their previous songs with more brutal openings (like "Soul Decision" on Hours that would switch between very heavy, and power metal choruses). "Incorporate Your Demons" is probably the most consistent of the heavier songs on the album, with the songs that are less heavy containing more consistency within each song, but not a very consistent album. Not to say that this album's inconsistencies are a bad thing, with variety being the spice of life.
A bit more on the variety, if you bought it in North America, it came with a bonus track "The Devil's Own". It gives an answer "Can Mercenary thrash?" They don't thrash as well as Havok or Megadeth but they do thrash pretty damn well. Go look it up on youtube if you don't get the bonus track.
Don't listen to this album if you're expecting sweeping solos burning through fretboards or anything like that. The playing is good, but screaming solos aren't what Mercenary is about. They focus more on the vocals, and those are very good, ranging from mid-low to high-ish screams and good singing in an aggressive voice.
The album is good, solid metal. It isn't anything groundbreaking, but that's not what Mercenary is about. They are for writing good solid metal for good solid metalheads.
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