Death metal at its finest
Swedish band At The Gates has been creating havoc since 1990, and the band is a musical pioneer because they were the major progenitor for Gothenburg-style melodic death metal. Earlier this month, At The Gates released Nightmare of Being, and the record is filled with skull-crushing music. Tomas Lindberg’s vocals remain solid and powerful on each track. The guitar playing from Martin Larsson, Jonas Stålhammar and Jonas Björler shake the background with mind-dazzling riffs, and Adrian Erlandsson’s drum playing brings more insanity with each drum beat. Nightmare of Being will satisfy people’s hunger for death metal music.
The opening song, “Spectre of Extinction,” kicks things off with a dynamic vocal performance by Lindberg. At the beginning of the piece, the music is quiet, and then out of nowhere, the band starts to play. Lindberg’s vocals are authoritative as he screams out the lyrics in pure rage, and the louder Lindberg sings, the better the song is. “Spectre of Extinction” is a great example of what a death metal vocalist should sound like.
The ever-crippling track “The Nightmare of Being” shows how talented both Larsson and Stålhammar are as guitarists because each note shakes the background with vein-jolting noise. Overall, “The Nightmare of Being” is a fun composition that has Larsson and Stålhammar playing killer riffs that blend in with the dark theme.
“The Fall into Time” is a bit different from the previous tracks, but the drum playing by Erlandsson shines brightly by how he adjusts from playing on a faster musical tempo to a slower one all at once. “The Fall into Time” is gritty and dark, but Erlandsson knows how to create madness when he smacks the drum heads and cymbals.
A booming song on the album is “The Abstract Enthroned,” which bleeds great bass guitar playing from Björler. Throughout the whole track, Björler plays vibrating notes that contribute to the craziness, and the vibrations can be felt when people’s speakers are on the highest volume. “The Abstract Enthroned” is a wild tune that displays Björler’s skills.
“Cosmic Pessimism” is a dark and distinct song that will surprise people with how the band mixes up the music with slow and fast tempos. At first, it seems like the whole composition would be harmonic, but then out of nowhere, headbanging metal emerges from the background. “Cosmic Pessimism” will cause people to think that At The Gates is slowing down their pace, but that is not the case because loud death metal beautifully ends this piece.
At The Gates bring a hard dose of metal on Nightmare of Being, and fans will not be disappointed.