In Flames

A Sense of Purpose

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    8
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Frantic metal band In Flames can deliver a good melody around the militaristic, precision drumming of Daniel Svensson and the occasionally guttural yelps of frontman Anders Fridén. Whether it's a tight, polished effort like "The Mirror's Truth" with traces of classic metal à la Iron Maiden or especially Judas Priest, In Flames definitely bring a sense of purpose to this record. From there, the group increase the Metallica-ish franticness with "Disconnected" that relies on heavy guitar riffs but a far lighter, almost airy chorus and bridge. This is improved upon later on the album as "I'm the Highway" takes the record to another level. Probably the heaviest track is "Condemned," that again is driven by Svensson and the guitar tandem of Jesper Strömblad and Björn Gelotte. These less intense moments are rarities, though, as "Sleepless Again" almost contains slight "emo" characteristics throughout. The group truly strike gold with the deliberate but delectable "Alias" that brings to mind classic Led Zeppelin in the various twists and turns it takes. Following a beefy, brawn-saturated "Move Through Me," In Flames save the crowning achievement for the lengthy, winding "The Chosen Pessimist," which opens like a reflective, introspective piece of music by Sigur Rós before finding its way effortlessly. In Flames continue to make their mark by being rooted in a strong metal or hard rock foundation but being musically and creatively inquisitive enough to seek out something more.

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