Dead Calm Chaos

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Often cited as one of the forgotten bands of Swedish death metal, and the melodic Gothenburg style in particular, Evocation failed to capitalize on the popularity of its highly promising demos (released as far back as 1992!) and, by the time they reconvened midway through the 2000s, were playing serious catch-up to former peers like In Flames and Dark Tranquillity. Subsequent albums weren't even given the benefit of a U.S. release at times, but the group's second effort, 2008's Dead Calm Chaos, was one of several given a second lease on life via reissues through Metal Blade in 2012, and the funny thing is, years barely matter here anyway due to the timeless nature of Evocation's sound. To clarify, that sound encompasses, not only the melodic overtures associated with the city and bands cited above (and best exemplified here by "Silence Sleep," "Truth Will Come Clear," "Antidote," and "Razored to the Bone"), but also the rougher, tougher hallmarks common to the neighboring Stockholm death metal scene, birthplace of bands like Dismember and Entombed (pre-rot & roll conversion). That alternate facet is perfectly recognizable in the filth-encrusted riffing of "Angel of Torment," the high-intensity propulsion of "Boundead" [sic], and the wanton savagery of "Dust," "Protected by What Gods," and others; but it's really the amalgam of both of these distinct urban/musical settings that helps Evocation stand out from the herd. Whether it can distinguish them enough to reinstate the band's name among the Swedish death metal elite remains to be seen, but Dead Calm Chaos is a strong statement toward achieving that goal, at some point.

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