WITHIN TEMPTATION “THE SILENT FORCE” 2004 reviewed by: MetalKnight
1. Intro. 2. See Who I Am 3. Jillian (I’d Give You My Heart) 4. Stand My Ground 5. Pale 6. Forsaken 7. Angels 8. Memories 9. Aquarius 10. It’s the Fear 11. Somewhere 12. A Dangerous Mind 13. The Swan Song
With “Mother Earth” (2000), Within Temptation had achieved considerable critical and commercial success, indeed pushing the band to a career peak. Which was well deserved of course – the album seemed to be an ideal bridge for the tastes of underground metal die-hards and those more into mainstream stuff.
So, I was wondering why the apparent hesitation in exploiting this wave of success and record/release another album. Well, whatever the reason/s this new much awaited album is here. Bearing a tongue-in-cheek title, “The Silent Force” already risks overshadowing the aforementioned “Mother Earth” as far as both success and quality are concerned. Within Temptation have matured immensely in the space between the two albums, their songwriting skills are more polished and even the production quality of their sound has leaped ahead. In fact, I forgot when I enjoyed an album as much as this.
The style is anthemic symphonic rock with melancholy and progressive undertones, making generous use of keyboards. Growling parts that guitarist Robert Westerholt had peppered past compositions with are virtually absent here. Every now and then the band also makes use of some brief synthetic percussion loops. The influence of classical and baroque operas is obvious in the melodies. I cannot of course fail to cite the sensitive but strong voice of Sharon den Adel (silent force indeed!).
Difficult to choose the best tracks from this addictive album, but I’d probably elect ‘Jillian…’, ‘Forsaken’, ‘Angels’ and ‘Stand My Ground’. If Within Temptation play their cards right, “The Silent Force” could prove to be an ace up their sleeve, helping them to achieve a higher status in global rock stardom.