Soilwork The Panic Broadcast

Soilwork The Panic Broadcast
Many of those championing Soilwork as the cream of the late '90s Gothenburg melodeath crop have long since given up on them, and to be honest, it's their loss. Since then, the band have honed their polished Euro-nu sound to perfection, only to see the quality control slip slightly with the departure of guitarist Peter Wichers and the release of 2007's Sworn To A Great Divide. The Panic Broadcast mirrors Fear Factory's latest, in the sense that it looks forward while drawing from the strongest elements of their best work, settling on a happy medium of extremity. While tracks such as "Night Comes Clean" still gallop along with Stabbing the Drama-esque swagger, the majority of the album betrays a desire to recapture the intensity of their early work without sacrificing accessibility. A major drawing point for some will be the devastating shredding, proof positive that from a guitar-playing angle, Soilwork haven't missed a step. The production serves the album well by retaining a highly polished, wide open mix that highlights the complexity of the arrangements, shimmering bountifully during poppier moments while leaving more than enough room for the generally faster tempos to assail the listener, when appropriate. It may not be a jagged enough pill for some to swallow, but the band have bridged the gap from their earlier work to their more recent material effectively and are practically begging to be both rediscovered by the underground and shepherded further into the mainstream. (Nuclear Blast)