Arch Enemy – ‘Will To Power’ (Album Review)
Arch Enemy know what they’re good at – and they also know how to stay true to themselves, no matter how the music world twists and turns around them. Over the course of years and decades, they’ve earned the respect and admiration of many a melodic metal fan, and kept it all going through multiple major lineup changes.
Arch Enemy’s latest lineup – now including six-string wizard Jeff Loomis – is one hell of a beast. Will To Power is still another technical and compositional marvel, the kind of achievement made possible only by some of the biggest talents in the game. This being their tenth studio album, Arch Enemy have allowed themselves to stretch out and explore new sonic territory – even throwing in a ballad (Reason To Believe) for good measure.
Will To Power is an epic album – but at the same time, it’s not innovative by any stretch of the imagination. This is still, at its core, a metal album exclusively aimed at headbanging diehards, and while there’s nothing wrong with that, it means it’s hard to highlight any one moment as a point that stands apart from the pack. Although metal ballads may prove controversial among Arch Enemy’s core fanbase, outside its limits lie plenty of bands and artists who’ve tilled that soil for decades, and exponentially more listeners who’ve heard it all before.
Shattering the mould and reinventing metal is not the goal here. Expect some kind of super-progressive voyage into the outer limits of musical possibility, and you’ll be disappointed. But listen to Will To Power as a melodic metal album with a few additional extras (and some fucking incredible solos), and you’ll be satisfied.
LTK RATING: 80%
What do you think of Arch Enemy and Will To Power? Leave a comment, follow me on Twitter, and let me know!
Will To Power drops September 8; pre-order it on iTunes here.