Soilwork - Verkligheten (2019)


As the first review of 2019, we are quite glad that it is Soilwork’s latest opus “Verkligheten”. Featuring a more melodic and catchy edge, this release continues the band’s musical progression into more engaging and innovative territories. Picking up where they left us with “The Ride Majestic”, the band delivers heaps of superbly catchy chorus sections, expertly crafted vocal melodies and lush instrumental arrangements that will have you hitting the repeat button more than a few hundred times on this release.

Immediately after setting the mood with the mysterious album title track, the band hits the gas with a furious combination of blistering drumming and a harsh vocals. This opener is definitely quite heavy and very fitting as the song transforms back and forth between harsh and brutal to more melodic thanks to Björn Strid soaring clean vocals. After catching the listener by surprise with the intensity of the previous song, the band keeps things hectic with the hard rocking riffing of “Bleeder Despoiler”. This track provides an interesting combination of some Heavy Metal-esque influences mixed together with the band’s brand of Melodic Extreme Metal they have refined over the years.

One of our favorite tracks, “Full Moon Shoals” has a very funky and engaging melodic nature that is brilliantly complemented by very dramatic vocal arrangements and killer guitar leads. This is definitely one of the highlights of the release as the pace is just perfect for a long headbanging session. Invoking their inner Amorphis, “The Nurturing Glance”, “Witan” and “When the Universe Spole” are brilliant songs that explode with solid guitar leads and memorable Heavy Metal-esque moments which produce a very interesting and intriguing sound.

Featuring Alissa White-Gluz on guest vocals, “Stålfågel” is a magical song that is quite catchy in nature, while featuring killer dueting vocal onslaughts. Those looking for more recent signature Soilwork melody and aggression, “The Wolves are Back in Town” is the perfect song for this. One of the most interesting tracks in this release is the Southern-esque vibe of “The Ageless Whisper” and its twangy guitars. With Tomi Joutsen on guest vocals, “Needles and Kin” is one of the most intense tracks in this release thanks to its hellish drumming, furious guitar work and of course: crushing vocal arrangements.

As a whole, “Verkligheten” is one hell of an album that shows Soilwork at its best. The band’s musical evolution takes one step further with the mode melodic edge of this release. We are quite blown away by the killer debut of Bastian Thusgaard on drums, and how the band perfectly blends melodic elements with their signature cutthroat aggression. This is one of the first must buy releases of 2019.

Bands: Soilwork Album: Verkligheten

Label: Nuclear Blast Records

Release: January 11th, 2019

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Genre: Melodic Extreme Metal

Country: Sweden

Rating: 93/100

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