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Iamsin - Kings & Queens

Kings & Queens
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 12 December 2017, 7:30 AM

Hailing from the very Metal country of Finland, Metalcore/Post-Hardcore quintet IAMSIN present their debut album here, titled “Kings & Queens.” The album contains twelve tracks. Just the mention of the word “core” can trigger a Metal enthusiast, but I have always felt it was unfair. I like the genre, and like any genre, there are good bands and there are bad bands. But to lump them all together is unfair. With that in mind, let’s hear what the lads have for us on “Kings & Queens.” “Queens” leads off the album with a bang. It’s a fast moving song, with both raging Death vocals and clean vocals as well. The harmonies in the cleans help to keep the melody on point while the instrumentation rampages. “Sin City” has a bit more of the Post Hardcore sound, with a heavy, thudding, open note guitar chord, and the roar of harsh vocals.

“Notorious” is starting to show some consistency on the presentation of the sound on the album. The riff stays in the low range and the focus in the vocals is indignation. They have the brutal part of the genre down for sure. But, the genre allows more melody than others, and it remains an area not explored as much as it could be. The clean vocal harmonies in “Numb” are an example of how they do, but there are not quite enough moments of this to temper the aggression of most of the sound. “Colours,” however, has that opening guitar riff that is reminiscent of the Gothenburg sound that made the MDM genre so memorable, and the liberal use of clean vocals keeps melody in the storefront.

As the album moves along, they seem to get better with the balancing act that is so crucial to success in this genre. “One by One” is fierce and biting at times, but warm and inviting at others. The intensity is still very much there, but they let a little more emotions into the equation which I enjoyed. “Dismantle the Throne” closes the album, with an energetic and violent attack; a good closer to sum up the album. The cleans in the chorus help to cut some of this violence with sonority that you can sing along with.

Some people say Metalcore can be too patterned. That is partly the case here. This is a promising young band however who have done a pretty good job on the album here establishing their identity. There is definitely potential here and I enjoyed many of the songs. But with a twelve track album in this genre, you have to find a way to get some diversity going, or run the risk of too many of the songs having the same length and similar patterns. Still, this would be a band I would be interested in hearing more from in the future.

Songwriting: 6
Originality: 5
Memorability: 6
Production: 8

3 Star Rating

1. Kings & Queens
2. Sin City
3. What Dwells Within
4. Notorious
5. Numb
6. Don’t Wake me up
7. Colours
8. My Pride
9. One by One
10. Ravenblood
11. Sleepless
12. Dismantle the Throne
Petter Löf – Vocals
Conny Segervall – Guitar
Nikolai Juselius – Guitar
Michael Mikander – Bass
Mika Paananen – Drums
Record Label: Inverse Records


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