Having rightfully decided to go their separate ways rather than attempt to surpass (or even match) the stunning death metal masterpiece which was 1995's Slaughter of the Soul, Sweden's At the Gates were given their last rites with 2001's Suicidal Final Art collection. Comprising highlights from their entire four-year, four-album run, the album serves as a fine introduction to the overachieving Swedes, whose dull early exploits in no way predicted the amazing evolution which followed. After dispensing with the few highlights from their modest debut, the album spends a surprising amount of time on the band's rather underwhelming second effort, With Fear I Kiss the Burning Darkness. Album number three, the much-improved (and very short) Terminal Spirit Disease, is also well-represented, but rightly so, leaving little room to display the band's absolute masterpiece named above. But this is just as well, as Slaughter of the Soul was the kind of tour de force which is best experienced in its entirety for full impact. As such, it remains essential for any self-respecting metalhead, and arguably a better first purchase than even as fine a set as Suicidal Final Art.
AllMusic Review by Eduardo Rivadavia