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Frequency - Rotten Empire

Rotten Empire
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 02 January 2012, 9:01 PM

Not long ago I watched the humorous connected duo video clips of the “fist fighting” Swedish, once Death Metal, bands of IN FLAMES and SOILWORK. If you remember these two, it was IN FLAMES’s “Trigger” and its counterpart of SOILWORK, “Rejection Role”. Well, my point is not about dealing with what went on these clips, but to show you that this is where I think that true Swedish melodic Death Metal, you may still call it Gothenburg, stopped right before becoming the Metalcore figure that partially reigns its existence nowadays.

FREQUENCY, among the huge flow of bands that has been stretching the definition of melodic Death Metal into diverse boundaries, is exactly the right same spot where both IN FLAMES and SOILWORK stopped making authentic and highly acclaimed melodic extreme music. To what came afterwards, you probably took enough listens to their later discography to see the inferno of what was once a wonderful Metal subgenre. If you didn’t, trust me that if you are a true Death Metal fan, you probably won’t like it.

The Spanish FREQUENCY, signed to Suspiria Records, has just released its debut album “Rotten Empire” and with it showed that nothing has really changed when it comes to their music. While scouring the release, I have to admit that it went by me pretty fast without letting me the chance to actually point on something that I really liked. You can say that it is a good thing due to maybe I happened to like the entire album. Well, I have to raise my voice here and say that it is not entirely accurate, maybe not at all. FREQUENCY have their moments with great riffs, cool harmonies that took me to better days of IN FLAMES, great solos and amazing keyboards’ coverage (when inserted) al’a SOILWORK, and lest I forget the furious growl vocals exchanging hands with raspy, clean vocals that were set just right. However, sometimes when you listen to the same thing over and over, and I am not talking about stuff that is similar to this release, but similarities between tracks. Therefore, I would place my bid on recycling formulas.

Nonetheless, FREQUENCY more or less remained in the posture where they can still be recognized as modernized melodic Death Metal and playing it nicely. “Feed The Lambs” and “Cocaine”, as top tracks of the release, should be their ball and chain for the following releases. I distinguished that the band’s aim was to devise compositions that will be both aggressive, deathly like hostile while keeping it both harmonious and catchy in the same time. I can’t say that this modus operandi isn’t a great recipe for success, yet, I would suggest on trying to show different patterns that wouldn’t present that band as too obvious, or as it happens sometimes on “Rotten Empire”, a little bit of recycling that is a step backwards.

In general, FREQUENCY were produced well on this album with a sound pattern of early 00s type of modern Death Metal, and most importantly, they are talented at what they do. I would keep my eye on them if I were you.  

3 Star Rating

1. Alone I Dwell
2. Inner Masquerade
3. Roy Pribeaux's Loveless
4. From Yesterday
5. Feed the Lambs
6. Cocaine
7. I Must Die
8. As You Created Hell
9. Story Devourer
10. A Shadow that Revolvers 
Santiago Barbero- Vocals
Juan Angel López- Guitars
David Cañizares- Guitars
Pablo Gómez- Bass
Ignacio Merino- Drums
Record Label: Suspiria Records


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