Soilwork - _Natural Born Chaos_
(Nuclear Blast, 2002)
by: Pedro Azevedo (
Such a talented lot, Soilwork, and just look what they are turning themselves into. They used to play Swedish death metal with a bit of a technical twist, plus some particular choruses that were becoming a trademark for the band. Their last disc, _A Predator's Portrait_, saw the band focusing more on those choruses, while the overall result was rather close to some of In Flames' latest effort _Clayman_. On _A Predator's Portrait_ and its predecessor _The Chainheart Machine_, Soilwork had departed from the more straightforward Swedish death origins of their debut _Steelbath Suicide_ without compromising the balance of aggression and catchiness. On _Natural Born Chaos_, however, they have broken that balance. The choruses sound poppy and more accessible than before, often catchy in a similarly irritating way to a commercial jingle; and what used to be the more aggressive and dynamic parts are now watered down, slower, less dynamic and more "rocking". The lyrics are mostly uninspired, which becomes very noticeable during the choruses, depriving the album of any emotional qualities. The result is an album that unfortunately comes across as bland and uninteresting in the light of what the band has done before. Here's hoping they'll do better next time around, because they -can-.
(article published 3/7/2002)
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