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Flatline: Pave the Way

Funny how this American band has pretty much gone unnoticed since their inception back in 2005. Flatline have a style that should appeal to anyone who digs classic thrash, melodic death, and some of the modern metal influences, and this new release Pave the Way(their fourth), though not much in the form of groundbreaking material, is a solid display of energetic and at times violent metal. These guys take early 90's Pantera, channel in some Machine Head and Lamb of God, and splatter some guitar riffs right out of both the Metallica/Megadeth/Testament scene as well as In Flames/At the Gates school in each song for good measure. It's a formula that works for the most part, and guitar players Randy Weitzel & Joseph Guerra really are the stars here, the duo lay down plenty of impressive riff-o-rama and wicked, tasty solos throughout, like on "Generations Fall" and "The Passing", and drummer Tim Hassemer also needs to be credited for his gymnastic, spirited drum work on these breakneck tracks. Singer Travis Johnson stays within a Phil Anselmo styled bark/growl for much of the CD, and though his delivery does fit these songs pretty well, you'd almost wish he'd mix things up a bit, though he does offer up an interesting, whisper-like quality on the more atmospheric "God As My Witness".

Overall, Pave the Way has its moments, but too much of the CD tends to sound the same as many of the songs follow a too similar path to each other. Despite that, there's enough to recommend here to fans of modern American extreme metal, and I'm sure that Flatline, with their history of busy recording and touring, will continue to grow and mature.

Track Listing
1. Blessed By Death
2. Generations Fall
3. Collapse
4. Dying Breed
5. Nefarious
6. The Passing
7. Deleted
8. God As My Witness
9. Worn Thin
10. Mulch

Added: July 3rd 2009
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band's MySpace Page
Hits: 2047
Language: english

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