For some Front Line Assembly fans, Implode marked a downturn in the band's musical creativity and energy. Epitaph may sound like the title of an album that completed this descent. Instead, Epitaph marks a return to former strength for the classic electro-industrial act. All the contemporary Front Line Assembly trademarks are here: guitar bites, Leeb's vocoded apocalyptic wisdoms, and solid electronic architectures that do not pander to dancefloors, but are still packed with a relentless energy. This is a strong release, reminiscent of Hard Wired or the best moments of Flavour of the Weak. Front Line Assembly still has a well-established sound (despite Rhys Fulber's departure and Peterson's arrival prior to Flavour of the Weak), but Epitaph shows that a well-re-established sound does not mean the sound cannot evolve. Beats have grown more complex, often breaking. A few tracks, such as the title track, "Epitaph," or the epic "Existence," have taken on more ethereal qualities. Some tracks, such as "Dead Planet," are classic Front Line Assembly hard electro on a pounding beat. This release is the work Front Line Assembly is known for, without being just another Front Line Assembly album. No Front Line Assembly collection would be complete without Epitaph. The new duo has proved that they still wield the power of one of the longest-lived electro styles to great effect.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Theo Kavadias