Company: Nuclear Blast Release: 2009 Genre: Melodic Thrash Reviewer: Hail and Kill
For those who like metal unpredictable and ambitious
Even with several amazing albums to their credit Scar Symmetry remain an underrated band. What gives? For this fourth chapter in their illustrious discography (few metal bands have churned out the quality they have in such a short span of time), it won't take repeated listens to 'get it.' "Dark Matter Dimensions" is whoop ass metal 98% of the time—the two percent left out is probably from a recycled riff or boring lyrics. Founded in 2005 by five seasoned veterans of the Swedish metal scene; since the very talented vocalist Christian Alvestam's departed a year ago the remaining members have settled on two replacements to fill his shoes.
Much to our delight, this new version of Scar Symmetry marks yet another step up for the now-sextet. It all comes together here: the ideas, the music, the sheer epicness. Beginning with sugary guitar leads that fade out once the brutal stuff starts to churn, opener "The Iconoclast" reintroduces Scar Symmetry's audience to their special brand of magic--alternating harsh (Robert Karlsson) and clean vocals (Lars Palmquist) amid a backdrop of complex heavy metal that evokes sci-fi visions in our mind's eye. The tasty aural juice continues to ooze out our speakers with nary a spot of filler except for a few rather boring tunes such like the stripped down "Mechanical Soul Cybernetics" and the unfortunately forgettable title track.
Nevertheless, the bulk of "Dark Matter Dimensions" is a musical feast for anyone who ever enjoyed their metal unpredictable and ambitious. It's useless comparing Scar Symmetry to any other band these days; this far into the game Scar Symmetry's uniqueness is already well-established. There's your favorite Meshuggah, Soilwork, Mercenary...and in a league of their own, Scar Symmetry. For the choicest cuts on this mind warping release, try the emotional "Noumenon and Phenomenon or the sprawling "Radiant Strain" that has more unpredictable turns than a roller coaster. Those wanting extra morsels of Scar Symmetry v.2 should try getting a copy of the album's Japan edition, which includes the excellent bonus "Pariah" that's utter perfection.
With a track record most bands would envy, Scar Symmetry show the world they can do no wrong.
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