The sophomore album from Sweden's Torchbear, Warnaments, is a concept album dealing with a specific battle of World War II, and sees their mix of thrash, melodic death metal, and black metal really firing on all cylinders. Featuring members of both Scar Symmetry and Angel Blake, Torchbearer really sound like neither band, with the exception of the fact that there are plenty of wild guitar solos throughout Warnaments which fans of Scar Symmetry will find to their liking. Otherwise, this is pretty brutal stuff, but sprinkled with enough melody and musical complexity to keep things interesting.
Opening tracks "Dark Clouds Gathering" and "Last Line of Defense" contains no shortage of power riffs, blast beats, and growling vocals, while "Buriel Waters, Deepsome Graves" throws some progressive elements at the listener utilizing keyboards and some melodic elements. "Swift Turns of War" is a blistering thrash number, with deep growls, intricate riffs, blazing solos, keyboards, and relentless drum fills. The instrumental "The Stale Drownings" is filled with all sorts of keyboard orchestrations, and "Batlespawn" is pure, raging death metal, but with catchy & melodic guitar work. Fans of In Flames and Dark Tranquility will love the mix of melodic death metal and progressive metal on the complex "Where Night is Total" (which even has some cool Dimmu Borgir styled black metal vocals), and if you like epic sounding extreme metal, look no further than "Sealer of Fates" and the sledgehammer punch of "The Blunt Weapon".
Warnaments is a very varied release from Torchbearer, containing all sorts of metal styles that should please most fans of extreme metal, and solidify their stance as a band that's ready to make their mark. This is seriously good stuff here.
1. Dark Clouds Gathering
2. Last Line Of Defense
3. Burial Waters, Deepsome Graves
4. Swift Turns Of War
5. The Stale Drownings
7. Where Night Is Total
8. Sealer Of Fates
9. The Blunt Weapon