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Dark Tranquillity - Construct Review

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Dark Tranquillity - Construct

Dark Tranquillity - Construct

Century Media Records
Dark Tranquillity’s latest album started from a dark place. There was a lot of conflict and friction in the writing and recording of their previous album We Are The Void. The band toured a lot longer than usual between records because they dreaded going through that process again. Bassist Daniel Antonsson also left the band.

But for Construct, instead of guitarist Martin Henriksson taking the lead in putting the songs together, there was more collaboration. Vocalist Mikael Stanne told me it was a liberating and positive experience.

Although the recording of Construct ended up being a good experience, you can hear the darkness and sadness in the composition of many of the songs. It’s a wide ranging and diverse effort, as the melodic death metal pioneers are right on their game.

The somber opener “For Broken Words” has some almost black metal guitar parts and sets the emotional tone of the album. Dark Tranquillity pick up the pace on the catchy “The Science Of Noise.” Melodic vocals make an appearance on the atmospheric “Uniformity,” the album’s first single. When it comes to singing vocals, there are a little more of them on this album than on their past few releases, but the tone of many of the songs lends themselves more to singing than screaming.

Things really get cranking on the thrashy “Apathetic,” with galloping riffs that periodically ease up before speeding back up again. One of the highlights of the album is “What Only You Know.” Instead of using harsh vocals on the verse and then singing the chorus, Stanne reverses it, and it really works well.

With the exit of Antonsson, bass duties on the album were taken up by Henriksson, who played bass for DT for many years before switching to guitar after 1999‘s Projector. He shows no signs of rust, doing an excellent job. His guitar work with Niklas Sundin is also top-notch throughout.

Although the first half of the album is stronger than the second half, there are still plenty of strong songs on the latter part of Construct. “State Of Trust” injects some industrial elements, and “Weight Of The End” has some of the album’s best riffs.

As one of the legendary bands in the genre, it’s no surprise that Dark Tranquillity has delivered another quality album with Construct. It’s one of their most creative and diverse releases in quite a few years.

(released May 28, 2013 on Century Media Records)

Disclosure: A review copy was provided by the publisher. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.

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