Darkane - _Layers of Lies_
(Nuclear Blast, 2005)
by: Jackie Smit (
So how's this for a song title then: "Amnesia of the Wildoerian Apocalypse". Time was that it was almost only black metal bands that would turn heads with song names like that, but Darkane is no corpse-painted black metal troupe. They have however been turning heads for some time now, first capturing an impressive amount of attention in 1998 with the massively lauded _Rusted Angel_. Releasing a solid body of quality material since then, _Layers of Lies_ is their fourth effort, and although all the usual Darkane creative elements are still most definitely present, it's almost immediately a less focused and striking record than its predecessor for a number of reasons. Most evident out of these is the band's apparent desire to appeal to fans of Soilwork and the like, piling in typical guitar harmonies by the truckload into tracks like "Secondary Effects" and at several points during the album losing sight in the process of what's made them so damn noteworthy to begin with. The uneven quality of this record is even more apparent in the face of an outstanding song like "Organic Canvas" -- a more traditional Darkane number that combines Meshuggah-like technicality, thrash and huge crashing plumes of sci-fi tinged melody. Thankfully, it's not like these sparks of genius are in short supply either, and although _Layers of Lies_ is unlikely to storm Album of the Year charts the world over, it's still a fine, if inconsistent, piece of work.
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