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In Flames Come Clarity

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In Flames - Come Clarity
01. Take This Life
02. Leeches
03. Reflect The Storm
04. Dead End
05. Scream
06. Come Clarity
07. Vacuum
08. Pacing Death's Trail
09. Crawl Through Knives
10. Versus Terminus
11. Our Infinite Struggle
12. Vanishing Light
13. Your Bedtime Story Is Scaring Everyone
2006 Ferret Music

OUR SCORE
7
USER SCORE
8

Reviewed by: Drew Ailes   //   Published: 1/25/2006

Everyone seemed to weep and moan once it was announced that In Flames had joined the Ferret roster. However, their truly intelligent fans realized that this developmentmeant absolutely nothing, given the fact that In Flames supposedly "went soft" and changed years ago. Still, the question loomed over everyone's head - what happens to a band after jumping from a label that releases Misery Index records to a label that puts out material from A Static Lullaby

Well, truthfully, it's about what you'd expect if you managed to keep your head in one piece upon hearing the news, but not as bad as naysayers may try to convince you.

Maybe I'm a rare breed of idiot, but usually I can prepare a fairly accurate review within hearing the first three songs on a record. In Flames has really hit me with a few sharp angles here, causing whatever shred of analyzation skill I have to disintegrate. I'm left confused and speechless at points, but also with an urge to congratulate the band for finally taking a defiant step into the direction we've all been preparing ourselves for them to take. While the band clearly exhibits more "mainstream" qualities at times, such as prominent female vocals, more rhythmic electronics/keyboards, and the occasional semi-syrupy chorus, certain tracks also can take even the most determined skeptic by surprise due to how unconventionally aggressive they are. Although this isn't a shock considering In Flames have never been contending for some sort of throne of brutality, it's commendable to hear a band succeed at now-multiple comparatively different approaches. Firing on all cylinders with its intense riffing and recognizable screams one minute and clean emotional singing the next, "Take This Life" works as a first song should and partially indicates things to come. "Vacuum" is particularly effective with its thrashy verses that cleverly lead into a gigantic clean-sung chorus, as "Pacing Death's Trail" merges the almost-electronic sound of the processed guitar very well to create a stable build to a brow-raising up-tempo part. A quick listen through each track and it's undeniable that In Flames haven't caved in to pressure of current trends, even after switching labels.

This isn't to say I don't have any gripes over the record. At certain times these newly unveiled traits prove to work miraculously, such as the memorable singing on "Leeches," but other times the listener is left lukewarm by the band's half-baked approach, as on "Crawl Through Knives." The confrontational female singing on "Dead End" is far too frilly and melodramatic for my tastes. While it's only on one track, this is a startling shift that seems out of place even if you forget you're listening to an In Flames album - especially considering that the song precedes "Scream," a track on which the band barely even resembles their former selves. Catchy and percussive, it's far more direct and cut-throat, a sound that I fear may indeed push away some of their fans who have been pampered by the same basic Swedish melodies for over ten years. Honestly though, I could see past the inherent low-points on the record if the entire CD was up to par with the better tracks on the album. Despite there being a definite lack of any real bad parts on Come Clarity, parts of it drag on and partially plateau for longer than I'd prefer.

Bottom Line: In the end, the positives outweigh the negative. While it may go against everything I've been taught by Pantera DVDs, disgusting goregrind basement shows, and booklets for old Century Media compilation records, I can confidently recommend the modern polished and more emotive version of In Flames right alongside the same band that once shared riffs with Dark Tranquillity. They've done a more than acceptable job of bridging the style they became known for with a more accessible sound while somehow retaining what appears to be their integrity. While many may point their fingers towards the folks over at Ferret for allegedly "tainting" one of their bands, anyone who takes the time to analyze the band's work over the last four albums will see that this is just another natural manifestation. At the very least, they're proving to the world that it's possible for a metal band to still continually advance even on their eighth record in a twelve year history.

Comments
anonymous   posted 5/7/2007 11:11:43 AM
in flames is ruined
0mega_   posted 3/31/2007 3:14:07 PM
come clarity is great. you're right, it's better than stye but not as good as rtr, but it has still some great tracks.. take this life, dead end, crawl through knives and reflect the storm are my favourite
throwbreedengage10_   posted 12/18/2006 7:21:44 PM
deff the best album they put out yet amazingly well structed bad ass and melodic its great 10/10
logan_   posted 9/11/2006 7:35:08 AM
oh yeah... and one more thing.
in flames want to be korn ?
what the f*ck ???
did you just see anders dreds and assume the rest ? or did your immensely powerfull brain piece that correlation together from the fact that "they both have guitars and screams" ?
when did inflames ever have a nu or rap influence ?
and when the f*ck did korn ever have swedish folk on their records ?
you f*cking sucker, go split your wig... your brains will certainly be more use on a wall.
logan_   posted 9/11/2006 7:30:25 AM
you want my opinion you sad bastards should get a life and boycott all these review places and perhaps sometime in your shit time on this planet you will realise that it is only you that matters.
f*cks sake, if you cant grasp that concept then you shouldnt even be listening to in flames... never mind commenting on it.
do any of you twats actually understand what the spirit in this kind of metal is about ?
obviously not... go and buy a rap album... you shallow f*ckface bitches.

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