Philly has cheese steaks. Chicago has deep-dish pizza. And Gothenburg, Sweden? It’s got melodic death metal.
As pioneers and practitioners of the “Gothenburg sound,” the members of In Flames have forged a successful thirteen-year career by combining listenable thrash riffs and harmonized, minor-key guitar lines with the Tasmanian Devil vocals of Anders Fridén.
And although it’s only natural that a band with such longevity would try to evolve, the best moments on the band’s eighth album, Come Clarity, are also the most conservative. “Scream” and “Pacing Death’s Trail” are classic In Flames, with up-tempo, tuneful thrashing and bombastic choruses as catchy as they are heavy. Elsewhere, the band adds electronics, acoustic intros and even an embarrassing female pop vocal cameo (“Dead End”), all of which sand down the rest of the album’s rawness. Still, all these unnecessary flourishes are just pesky flies buzzing around Come Clarity‘s fresh meat. Eight albums into its career, In Flames is still on fire.