Fireborn - Creation Chaos
Self Financed
Melodic Death Metal
9 songs (49:00)
Release year: 2003
Reviewed by Keegan

Sharing the hometown of Cannibal Corpse, Buffalo, New York’s Fireborn attempts to create European-influenced American melodic death metal. Formed in 1998, the band recorded one four-song demo before talking an independent full length release with Cration Chaos.

The album opens with a very In Flames-influenced guitar riff and cymbal stop pattern to introduce Unholy Vengeance. Though the riffs are decent, there isn’t all that much disparity between the verse riff and the chorus riff. This constant variation on one theme does get a bit boring after 5 minutes. The lead guitar is also slightly out of tune with the rhythm guitars, making the entire solo section uncomfortable to listen to, which is cool though I don’t think it’s the effect these death metallers were going for. Far and away the largest problem with the song is that the band constantly floats in and out of time. Often parts will start late or early, and the tempo changes not drastically, but definitely noticeably several times. Obviously these guys put a lot of money into this release, which makes me wonder why they didn’t use a metronome. The next song, Remains Untold is much more solid in terms of structure, and performance. The main riff sounds like a b-side from Dark Tranquility’s Damage Done. The bridge goes for a catchy Clayman-esque hook, though it’s not entirely in time, reducing its effect considerably. The second time around it goes much smoother and sounds nearly cool enough to make up for the botched first bridge. Guitarist Scott Ketch plays a well-written solo, but much like the previous song, his guitar is slightly out of tune. I must also compliment drummer Matt Swistak on his performance. Though his timing is questionable, he writes fine parts and is a solid double-bass player.

Chains of Hate begins very heavy, but once again succumbs to lax timing and tempo shifting. Considering there is only one track of vocals for most of the CD, singer/bassist Adam Svensson manages to sound quiet powerful, albeit if his lyrics are unintelligible. Total Annihilation goes more brutal than any other song, but is a timing disaster. The album’s hectic pace dies down momentarily during the bass-driven intro to In the Seas of Pride. The band saves this piece from becoming another derivative melodic death metal song by including breaks where only the bass plays (imagine, a metal band that makes use of it’s bassist!). The guitar sounds muddier on this track than it did on any previous one, which is a shame because its one of the more cohesive tracks on the album. Clocking in at just under 8 minutes, the song drags on with few changes and would benefit from a little shortening. Divine Betrayal is very much akin to Total Annihilation, but much better in terms of use of dynamics, performance, and production.

The seventh song on the CD, The Search for Darkness is a clone of the first track, down to the intro riffing and cymbal stops. Unlike the song before it, The Search for Darkness doesn’t manage to correct the mistakes and flubs of Unholy Vengeance. Creation Chaos begins a generic death metal song, but in the middle takes quite an unexpected hardcore turn, before continuing from where it began. The album closes, wisely with by far the best song on the CD. The band sounds very tight, and the song contains more original riffs than any of the pervious 8 tracks. The Night of Obliteration goes through several drastic changes with nice drum fills and speedy picking, all in just over 5 minutes. This is undoubtedly the direction Fireborn should be heading in.

The band put a lot of work into all facets of this release. The production is quite good, and features a loud fat guitar sound, many times the hardest sound to record properly. The CD’s booklet even has complete lyrics for every song. Fireborn know how to put a good package together, and obviously have the resources to record a high quality CD, though they still have some problems to work through before they’re ready. the band needs to find their own identity before they can take the next step.

Killing Songs :
Remains Untold, Creation Chaos, The Night of Obliteration
Keegan quoted 59 / 100
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