In Flames - Breaking The Mold
By Martin Popoff
Sweden's In Flames have now, for a good three years, been tapped for future star status, and in alignment with their promise, they have never failed to deliver records of astounding metal beauty and power. Perhaps the first viable re-think on the idea of extreme metal, In Flames debuted with a scarce indie called Lunar Strain before two highly regarded releases on Nuclear Blast ('96's The Jester Race, '98's Whoracle) established the band's creamy yet insanely powerful death-meets-Maiden sound, placing In Flames within the elite of those curiously crossing into the often controversial zone between the melodic and the harsh.
In 1999, the band's fourth album Colony dropped, vaulting to the top of many best-of-year lists, including that of our print mag Brave Words & Bloody Knuckles, hitting the number one spot after a grueling tabulation (took bloody three hours) of all of the scribes' Top 25 lists for the year.
On the cover of BW&BK yet again, In Flames have created what was to be an expected daring step forward, Clay Man incorporating even more dynamics, new vocal experiments from Anders, an expanded portfolio of guitar sounds, brave new melodies and a rich pageant of textures captured once again within the meticulous environment of Sweden's Studio Fredman, this time a relaxed, enjoyable co-production between the band and long-time mate Fredrik Nordstrom.
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