Tiamat Prey

Smothering recent criticisms and disappointments, Tiamat’s latest takes a step back toward a more brooding, doom-laden incarnation of the band. Prey’s opening seconds offer an immediate hint to its direction, a snatch of bird song an echo from ten years past that continues in a mostly slow, sombre stride. What’s missing are the pop-infused goth rock gems Edlund has perfected — some fans may consider this a bonus — but there’s still plenty of sing-ability and stick-in-your-head choruses. First single, "Cain,” gets things off to a strong start, a vitality that carries through, making Prey more a continuous fabric of moody, mellow metal than a collection of hit and miss tracks — something we haven’t got out of the band in years. Tiamat has hit it right on with this one and Prey should win back many lost fans without alienating those that have joined up along the way. (Century Media)