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Pain Of Salvation - Linoleum CD (album) cover


Pain Of Salvation


Progressive Metal

3.22 | 119 ratings

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2 stars Given how much Scarsick grew on me, I made sure to give this latest EP from the eclectic Pain of Salvation lots of listening before passing judgment. Now, after at least 6 straight runs through the disc in it's entirety, I would feel better about being able to rate this. Which brings me to the point. Almost all of the "Perfect Elements" of Pain of Salvation, built up through years of many different styles and genres but retaining a clear and unrelenting identity, are stripped away. The always complex and brilliant compositions, meaningful and enriching solos, clear and often memorable melodies, and poignant lyrics well dressed in poetry or raw and disturbing are extremely scarce. While the last of these is still fairly present, particularly in the last real song, "Gone" , it is considerably less, and the lyrics to Mortar Grind are almost laughable. Then the "melodies". Or, better put, the lack there of. "If You Wait" has no melody what-so-ever. It's just Daniel, singing along to a bland backing as if he is reading words from a page and just spouting them out in melody. "Gone" has the strongest melody out of all the tracks. Now, Composition. Really simple, heavy, rhythmic, non-accentuated, heavily distorted, painfully predictable guitar riffs. Frederik is about as present in this record as Kristoffer Gildenlow and Johan Langell are. Really, he's an extremely talented keyboardist (and writer, for that matter), and Daniel Gildenlow is giving him absolutely nothing to go with. Once again, Daniel sees himself as the most fit to play bass. (hey, it's only job is to make sure his singing sounds perfect) I'm surprised I haven't mentioned singing yet, as it is the absolute center focus of the album. Yes, Daniel has one of the best voices I have ever heard, and this has not changed. However, It just loses so much when emotions and well-written melodies are not coming out of it. They are often so exaggerated that the lyrics are unintelligible, which pretty much leads the listener to believe that they (the lyrics) are not important , which is a complete contradiction to what Pain of Salvation has made themselves about since their seemingly more mature debut. There are also lots of distorted vocals that are really annoying, especially when heard in headphones. As far as tracks go, Gone is the only song that would be passable on any other Pain of Salvation album, I have to admit that the delivery on this song is well done. Bonus Track B is a funny edition to the album, and the Scorpions cover is one of the more enjoyable moments on the album. Overall, I am very disappointed, to say the least. I rated it relative to the rest of Pain of Salvation's catalog, considering that this is still better than 90% of the music out there, but a four star rating would imply that Pain of Salvation really did something right this time, which they didn't. I still think there are plenty of surprises left in store on Road Salt, but, unfortunately, partly because you can't fill two disks of this monotone and uninspired music without blatantly copying yourself.
dtismajesty | 2/5 |


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