JUNE 23th,2011  



Review by: Metal Mom

Over in Scandinavia in the year 1990 in the town of Gothenburg, a band was formed called In Flames, and moved on to become on of the most successful Swedish metal bands. They have now been around for 20 years, and have 9 albums under their belt. This month they have made it 10 albums, with the release of `Sounds of a Playground Fading`.

In February of 2010 Jesper Stromblad left the band, before recording this newest CD. So it was only natural to bring in the long time guitarist Niclas Engelin (Engel) to fill the spot. This makes this album the first without founding guitarist Jesper. That means the team to pull this all together would be, Anders (vocals), Bjorn (guitar), Peter (bass), Daniel (drums), and Niclas (guitars). In September of 2010 In Flames entered their own studio (IF Studio) and with producer Roberto Laghi (Sonic Syndicate, Hardcore Superstar) and co-producer Daniel Berg strand (Behemoth, Dimmu Borgir, Meshuggah), along with Orjan Ornkloo (keyboards and programming) they started recording their 10th album `Sounds of A Playground Fading`. Bjorn wrote all the music and was able to do things a bit differently. It turned out to be a challenge, rearranging things for the lyrics, or rewriting riffs to fit the ideas, which he never had to be concerned with before. The album title is thought provoking, suggesting a loss of innocence or season of change. Perfect for what they accomplished on this album.

In Flames pushes the envelope , and you will hear that in Ropes, or Fear is the Weakness, but they also bring in their previous sound from `Whoracle`era. To say the least they have made this a very unique CD, they have kept things interesting by stepping outside their realm, not all the same sound, a great thing when you are listening, because you just want to hear the whole CD. It is a death metal meets rock, a modern metal edge if you will. The guitar riffs seem to be the foundation stone that this album is built on, and well done and so are the solos, drums are easy on the ears, bringing it all together ,lets not forget bass, its not often you can distinguish the bass, but you know its also the sound that pulls the sound together to make it all fit so well. The vocals from Anders are clear, clean, but not too worry there are still the screams and growls we all know. This CD is without a doubt one that was not rushed, but well thought out and put together. `Sounds of a Playground Fading` is one of those CD`s that you put into your car, and blast it as you drive, foot tapping, hand pumping on the wheel, and head moving, and then do it all over again. This is definitely a `New Dawn` for IN FLAMES.

Don’t forget to catch IN FLAMES on the USA tour of `Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival Tour this year.