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The Root Of All Evil
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Après le succès de leur album Rise Of The Tyrant (2007), ARCH ENEMY revient avec une selection explosive des meilleurs titres de leurs trois premiers albums "Black Earth" (1996), "Stigmata" (1998) et "Burning Bridges" (1999), le tout entièrement reenregistrée ! Une débauche d'énergie, de la maîtrise et un professionalisme hors du commun, The Root Of All Evil représente une lecon de vilence pour tous les fans du groupe, de la brutalité mélodique à l'état pur ! Mixé et masteries par Andy Sneap (Megadeth, Testament, Exodus, etc.)
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Arch Enemy has put together a killer of a release with The Root of all Evil. I don't believe any of the songs on this were re-recorded for the love of money, if you'll forgive the biblical expression. This album is a compilation of songs from early AE albums Black Earth, Stigmata, and Burning Bridges, but to call this album a compilation is doing it a great injustice.
No one blends thrash and death metal musical styles as well as Arch Enemy. Simply put, I have not been able to find a flaw in this album, and believe me, I have tried. The production is impeccable. Angela Gossow's vocals are even more venomous, and noticeably so. The Amott brothers shred the backing with a full-on assault of musical power. Daniel Erlandsson's drumming is of fine quality, and Sharlee's bass bellows beneath the surface.
I think I have a new favorite AE album, if only my CD player can recover.
Buy this. You'll love it. Classic AE! The Root of all Evil gets 4.75/5 stars.
Anyway, don't pass judgment on this so soon. If you're too close-minded to bother with this, then don't. AE aren't trying to replace the classics with this, this is a tribute to them, and it's also for the newer fans that haven't seen the current lineup perform these songs live and want an idea of how awesome they would sound, and this cd shows it. The albums had great production quality as they were produced by Fredrik Nordström (Dark Tranquillity, In Flames). They kept it simple this time: producing it themselves with longtime friend, collaborator, and legendary producer Andy Sneap (Machine Head, Megadeth, Exodus) mixing & mastering. Everything about this record sounds perfect. Whether you're a fan of either vocalist's style, or both, you should give this cd a shot.
I've been a fan of Arch Enemy since the Burning Bridges days. I caught their very first U.S. performance, which was in Waunakee, Wisconsin of all places (I figured they would start on the east coast and work their way west), opening for Nevermore on their Dreaming Neon Black tour. I think my girlfriend at the time and I were the only ones standing at the gate screaming with horns up . . . many of those present were locals who didn't understand the greatness they were witnessing. Followed the tour to Milwaukee for seconds the next night. I was on the email list and received word of Angela Gossow's induction into the band. I remember that Mike & Company teased us with sound samples and commented: "soon we'll reveal the one behind the vocals." Along with the rest of the world, my jaw dropped as I learned that it was noneother than . . . the very beautiful Angela Gossow! What a treat! And I remember sending Angela an email to express my congratulations to her and my anticipation of hearing everything to come with her in the band. The down to earth and friendly person she is, she sent me a very nice reply. AE are not only incredibly musicians, they're a great bunch.
There, those are my AE credentials. LOL.
Let's not forget that all the material on this album is over 10 years old, and my experience is that it has been a rarity to hear this material played live anymore. I very much missed stomping along to such favorites as Dead Inside or Pilgrim. While I would have loved to see a re-make of my personal favorites: Eureka and Idolatress, I suppose the band had to draw a line at some point - they can't remake everything, LOL.
I give 4 stars and not 5 because I too would prefer to hear new material. That said, I would never give this album a BAD rating because - as I said above - I think there is somethign at work here.
When Angela came into the band, she had big shoes to fill. AE was still in its "younger" stages and still carving out its niche. 10 years later, AE has grown. I believe this album is a re-interpretation of its older material, as viewed through the eyes of its more experienced band members, and mixing in Angela's vocal style to the overall product. In a sense, this album strikes me as almost therapeutic to the band - a way of connecting Angela to its very roots.
I agree with a few of the comments that have pointed out that some of the songs have lost a little bit of "edge." Well, again, lets not forget that the band undoubtedly sees the world and appreciates music differently than it did 10 years ago. Music, like people, has to evolve and grow. Music should not be a constant, it SHOULD be organic, and I believe that many of the previous reviewers should give this album another try, with "fresh" ears. Try to appreciate it for what it stands for, not for what the originals stood for.
I sincerely hope that AE is using this album to re-visit its roots and warm up its chops in preparation to BLOW US AWAY with a new album in the coming months!
I'm sure this will seem like sacrilege to the old school Arch Enemy fans that can't get into the band's second incarnation, but I think the band struck the right tone with The Root of All Evil (though Anthrax beat them to the punch with their similarly titled and identically themed The Greater of Two Evils). They're not trying to airbrush history. If that were the case I doubt they would have agreed to such elaborate reissues of Stigmata and Burning Bridges earlier this year. They're simply giving fans a chance to hear studio versions of some of the old songs with the current lineup - not to mention more modern technology and production values. Having Fredrik Nordstrom (Dark Tranquillity, In Flames) producing and Andy Sneap (Nevermore, Testament) mixing and mastering the album doesn't hurt either.
As I expected, the songs all sound great. I'm a fan of both versions of Arch Enemy, so I was really looking forward to this album. Gossow sounds amazing as always, and the band does their part to breathe new life into these old songs. I still prefer the original versions, but it's still cool to hear these remakes. I was a little disappointed that they didn't include new versions of "Sinister Mephisto" and "Burning Bridges", as those are probably my favorites from the Liiva era.
For those who think the Liiva albums are the only Arch Enemy albums worth owning, The Root of All Evil is not going to change your mind. Those who only enjoy the Gossow albums will hopefully look at these older songs in a new light, and will maybe even go back and check out the original albums. Arch Enemy fans that enjoy both eras of the band's history are the ones who will get the most out of this release.