Arch Enemy - Rise Of The Tyrant
Century Media
Melodic Death Metal
11 songs (48.34)
Release year: 2007
Arch Enemy, Century Media
Reviewed by Aleksie
The marvels of Swedo-Anglo-Germanic melodeath make a magnificent dent on the metal scene with their seventh studio album, Rise Of The Tyrant. Personally, I have always dug Arch Enemy in the sense that it has never been one of my favourites in any sense, but the band has never left me cold and almost without fault entertained me to the point of nonsensical moshing, both on record and live on stage. With this latest slab, they have just made a more devoted listener from yours truly.

The opener Blood On Your Hands begins with a foreboding siren that quickly gives room for a thrashy riff, Angela Gossow’s murderous shout and the battery-fury of Daniel Erlandsson. That starting-section with the guitars grinding in unison with slightly a flanger-induced sound and the tom-drums beating along with a hypnotizing pulse, just keeping the mood growing until bursting to total rage in the verse is magical – in a brutally catchy way. The track also establishes the utterly awesome quality and large amount of guitar solos on the whole album. It’s like Michael Amott and his returning-gloriously-to-the-fold -brother Christopher were having an album-length battle of one-upping each other with speedy-yet-übermelodic -guitar leads and harmonies. I am loving it, as it brings a really Maidenesque vibe to the whole package. Air guitarists should have a manic field day with this disc.

Gossow sounds as venomous and pissed-off as ever. Just check out the insanely fast The Last Enemy for some oddly-lamenting-yet-frightening anger. Compared to Doomsday Machine, where her vocals were mixed in with different effects and such here and there, on this one she sounds much more organic and pure. I think they captured the rawness that she has live on stage very well.

For a quick baffle and hopefully eventual answer from some of you: Gawddammit, which Blind Guardian-tune has almost an exactly similar melody line that is the main melody in I Will Live Again, the one played on a synth in the intro and on the guitar in the choruses?? Is it Theatre of Pain, during where Hansi goes “life had never existed”? No it's not, is it? Aaaarg! I should just pop in Somewhere Far Beyond in my player but I’m too lazy right now. Oh yeah, I Will Live Again is a brilliant mid-tempo rocker.

As far as the rocking goes, I also think this album ups the catchiness with the heavy rock -elements I find here and there in the riffs and melodies. Take the opening guitar riff to Revolution Begins and put it on say, an Accept-record. Fits like a glove, and makes the hair move so very well. Thrashy riffing on the other hand is displayed in songs like Night Falls Fast and Vultures, which make me think of the early days of Arch Enemy and all that glorious guitar mastery.

The production on the whole album is stellar and I can’t say anything bad about the cover art either. I find the connections between the imagery on it combined with the title Rise Of The Tyrant very amusing. Anyone seen those symbols, namely the eye of the Illuminati and legs that could be those of an eagle, on some other artefact? Anyhoo, in my mind this is one magnificently crafted piece of melodic (with a gargantuan M) death metal, that has hooks to spare along with the technicality. I would even go as far as calling this Arch Enemy’s best album yet, topping even Wages of Sin.

Killing Songs :
Blood On Your Hands, The Last Enemy, I Will Live Again, Revolution Begins, The Day You Died, Night Falls Fast & Vultures
Aleksie quoted 90 / 100
Other albums by Arch Enemy that we have reviewed:
Arch Enemy - Burning Bridges reviewed by Ben and quoted 90 / 100
Arch Enemy - War Eternal reviewed by Joel and quoted 89 / 100
Arch Enemy - Khaos Legions reviewed by Tony and quoted 87 / 100
Arch Enemy - Stigmata reviewed by Goat and quoted 90 / 100
Arch Enemy - Tyrants Of The Rising Sun - Live In Japan reviewed by Pete and quoted no quote
To see all 11 reviews click here
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