The Forsaken – The Arts of Desolation Review

Originally written by Ty Brookman

All hail The Forsaken for truly understanding the term and use of “melodic death metal”. Many bands blatantly despise their music to take on the many labels that often transpire outside of the sacred description of metal. At times it does get ridiculous but in the end the necessity to define a certain style of music I think is mainly for the fans that buy the shit. This way there is a common thread in which one can compare and define. It used to be when a band was dubbed a fucking melodic death metal band I pretty much knew exactly what I was in store for. Since it’s inception of course the genre has exploded and therefore expanded greatly leaving in its aftermath bands that really have no place in its category but for some reason are lumped into the mix. Whereas exploration does indeed create new genre’s I think by now melodic death metal’s fundamentals and standards have been defined so therefore put the weak ass shit that doesn’t compare into a new category of its own, dammit. How bout we name that category exactly how I just described it too, “Weak Ass Melodic Death Metal Shit That Doesn’t Compare” and of course this will warrant them their own section at your local brothel of metal so the nu-metal fucks can sucker right up to it and truly believe they have found the NEW happening sound. My whole point here is The Forsaken’s latest release, Arts of Desolation embraces and embodies what in my opinion is the original definition of what melodic death metal should encompass. Intricate guitar riffing layered with brutal speed yet maintaining enough use of melody to distinguish the sound from straight up death speed freaks that will not let up at any cost. In layman’s term this meaning something of a hook. Upon the first listen of Arts of Desolation the most obvious trait of extreme and stand out performance has to be the insane cruelty of Nicke Grabowski’s superior talent on the drum kit. Grabowski’s skill is a deadset manifest of crush, with a production that backs it up and truly captures every nuance of the drum slinger’s capacity. Precession double bass, countered fills and cymbal work that screams of abuse, Grabowski is quite simply nothing short of a deadly force. While diving deeper into the ensemble of pain through more listens is the severe guitar riffage of speed and true meat tones delivered by Stefan Holm and Patrik Persson that come to light and beat you down with a frenzied reprisal. The pair blast riffs of pain at every angle only to back the machine right over you again with their highly schooled leads of chaos. With punishing speed supplying the framework the duo subtly bash your skull with amazingly stealthy hooks that suck you in before you even realize you are actually there. Rounding out the mayhem is front man Anders Sjöholm. Offering up a lower vocal tone this time round his voice fits perfectly, very aggressive, very brutal and always straight to the sting, Sjöholm keeps the abuse rolling and the kill shred always blood red. Bottom Line: This album is absolutely fucking powerful, with so many intricate attacks throughout, absorbing it completely will take several listens. While there are straight-up riffs of crunch the majority of Arts of Desolation moves by incredibly fast therefore missing killer subtleties is bound to happen. This is definitely a case of the more I listened the more The Forsaken’s talent really set in. As far as breaking any new ground well it’s pretty fucking hard to do that now a day but as far as delivering a pure melodic death metal performance in every sense of the term The Forsaken do indeed bring the pain!

Posted by Old Guard

The retired elite of LastRites/MetalReview.

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