AlbumsNovember 29, 20118,435 views

Dark Tranquillity Character

01. The New Build 02. Through Smudge Lenses 03. Out of Nothing 04. The Endless Feed 05. Lost to Apathy MP3 06. Mind Matters 07. One Thought 08. Dry Run 09. Am I 1? 10. Senses Tied 11. My Negation
2005 Century Media Records
Our score 8


I've heard people complain about the popularity of Swedish metal, and even though I remain a fan of many metal bands from Sweden, I can understand their complaints. Whenever a regional scene gains some sort of status, they have a certain sound attached to every band that comes from that area, whether it applies or not. I'm sure this can get tired, and make someone burned out on the whole sound. I've heard people say they are so tired of the "Gothenburg sound", and maybe that has to do with metal/hardcore bands bastardizing the original sound. I'm not sure. Amidst the knock-offs, and the sell-outs, Dark Tranquility returns with their seventh record, Character, and proudly proclaims that their town's sound is far from dead. When I first heard Dark Tranquillity, I wasn't that impressed. I was just told "yeah, it's the band the dude from In Flames used to be in." So I gave it a shot, got a copy of Projector, and found it to be a forgettable listen. It wasn't until Damage Done that I realized this band's power. Now, with Character, these guys seem to be showing the world that they aren't following the same path as In Flames and Soilwork. Instead, they seem to keep a firm grasp of their musical roots, while retaining a great modern sensibility. Character is a record that truly captures the "Gothenburg sound," and there are songs that sound like they could be updated versions of songs from their earliest albums, like "The Gallery." This is definitely melodic death metal, because, throughout the blast beats and snarling vocals, the sense of melody is strong, tasteful, and intelligent. These songs are extremely well balanced. It has definitely been a while since I've heard such a great blend of aggression and beauty. With each listen, I am definitely reminded of Dark Tranquillity's earlier work, as far as aggression is concerned. The galloping drums, chunky riffs, and speeding rhythms are even more prevalent than on Damage Done. That's not to say Damage Done was weak by any means, but one can easily tell things have been kicked up a notch for Character. The clean, melodic vocals that were used on more recent albums seem to be completely discarded, and Mikael Stanne's performance soars. The keyboard performance has stepped up a bit, yet remains very tasteful, while adding an excellent layer melodic texture. My complaint about this record is that I doubt it will gain Dark Tranquillity any new fans. While their sound has beefed up, this is something they had done in the past. Perhaps, some older fans that were not impressed with Dark Tranquillity's exploration into more contemporary sounds will find this a bit of a return to their roots. Bottom Line: While I personally think this is a great metal album, I think that someone would have to already be a fan of Dark Tranquillity to really get into this. The production is killer, and the songs are mean as hell, while still possessing a haunting beauty. For myself, I couldn't ask for more.


Post Comment
jerkass_ 2/19/2005 11:14:04 AM

first post!

FudgeYourYankeeBlueJeans_ 2/19/2005 12:55:43 PM

have you ever listened to The Gallery or anything before Projector? you say Projector was a forgettable listen but if you got into their earlier stuff, you'd probably have a greater appreciation for it. i still say its their best cd to this day followed by The Gallery, Skydancer, Damage Done, Character, Enter Suicidal Angels, and then Haven. their new one is pretty good and its nice they mixed some of their older qualities in to kind of differintiate (sp?) from Damage Done. pretty good review th

oilpoilo_ 2/19/2005 4:53:39 PM

Dark Tranquillity >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Behemoth

d4n_ 2/20/2005 12:29:45 AM

good band

wyatt_ 2/20/2005 7:30:51 AM

This cd is honestly real good

vegans_taste_good_ 2/20/2005 10:38:54 AM

i like this cd a lot

Some Nigga_ 2/21/2005 4:19:08 AM

Behemoth >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Dark Tranquillity

anonymous 2/21/2005 10:24:30 AM

good cd by a great band

Ken Wregget_ 2/23/2005 4:18:15 AM

I doubt this guy is very familiar with Gallery, Mind's Eye, Suicide Angels, etc...Character is a natural extension of that stuff, far from different. This band knows what the f*ck they are doing. In Flames have always been a child's band compared to Dark Tranquillity. f*ck Anders Friden and his Jonathan Davis lookalike contest.

anonymous 2/24/2005 9:52:56 PM

In flames looking like Jonathan Davis. . .their singer whines like him too

ktownhcore_ 4/6/2006 3:09:49 PM

inflames sucks but besides the point this album f*cking rules

fvckyouyoufvckingfvck_ 1/24/2007 3:06:00 PM

this may be a little late but this cd kicks major f*cking ass.