Album Reviews, Culture, Metal / Hard Rock — August 12, 2013 at 3:10 pm

REVIEW: Dark Tranquillity – Construct


Dark Tranquility - Construct

Artist Name: Dark Tranquillity
Title Name: Construct
Label: Century Media
Reviewed by: Fabio Marraccini


Hailing from the outskirts of Gothenburg, Sweden, Dark Tranquillity emerged twenty years ago, when that region of the planet – and this band amidst a few others – became known for giving birth to the so-called melodic death metal. While some of their peers went into different directions after said sub-genre peaked, Dark Tranquillity remained faithful to the original sound they helped in creating, and their core line-up remains in the band to this date.

So, one would not expect many surprises out of this album, and there really aren’t any. It’s a stunning if not brilliant collection of songs that pays respect to their origins, moves it forward by blending keyboards and slower passages, and captures the listener by using vibrant hooks and catchy twists and turns. It starts on a very high note, “For Broken Words” opening the party with a jaw-dropping melody, and interesting rhythmic variations. “The Science of Noise” launches another sonic attack from the same side of the field, albeit a bit less melancholic than the previous tune. “Uniformity” brings an interesting mood change, an almost goth-metal song with clean vocals thrown in the mix. That sets the pace for the next few songs, when “Endtime Hearts” later going back to the brutal side of things. “Weight of the End” is however the highlight of the second half – or side ‘B’ for all vinyl lovers out there – as its riffs, melodies and tempo variations show why this genre became so popular in metal.

Construct is an effective effort from a well-established yet quite underrated band – In Flames and At the Gates seem to have taken most of the fame. Metal fans in general should perhaps visit this album and, for sure, re-visit Dark Tranquillity’s catalogue, giving them credit for injecting a lot of fresh air in this beloved yet sometimes saturated genre.