Melodic Death Metal | Metalcore
Soilwork was indeed one of the poster artists for me growing up, and had a massive role to play during the phase in which melodic death metal was my go-to genre. But the more I grew, the more I noticed just how ahead of their time and, quite frankly, underrated this band truly was.
To this day, I still admire works such as their 2003 album Figure Number Five, and their 2013 album The Living Infinite, as some of my favourite metal albums ever. What’s more, is that I thought their most recent album, 2019’s Verkligheten, was a very solid piece as well.
With that being said, my anticipation for Soilwork’s next move was occasionally catered to in the year of 2020, with a scattering of single releases. Namely, “Death Diviner” was in my opinion the clearest candidate of capturing the essence of Soilwork, and pushing it forward.
What I wasn’t quite expecting however, was that Soilwork would round this year off with one final release, that being for their newest EP, A Whisp Of The Atlantic.
This new project is another body of work which, much like Bring Me The Horizon’s POST HUMAN: SURVIVAL HORROR, blurs the line that is drawn between EP and full-blown album. However, Soilwork’s case is a little different; A Whisp Of The Atlantic carries with it the amount of tracks one would expect from an EP, which is 5. However, the incredibly extensive duration of the opening track (which also serves as this project’s title track), means that the total runtime of this EP comes to 36 minutes. But for the sake of avoiding indecision, I am going to nip my internal argument in the bud, and decide that this leans more towards being an EP.
Seen as I already touched upon the opener, I suppose it would be fitting to continue the review by addressing that. At a whopping 16 and a half minutes in length, I was initially excited to see how much of a godly ballad this was going to be, especially with Soilwork’s golden albums in the back of my mind. And while this track indeed carries a diverse range of instrumental elements, that really succeed in creating an oceanic amount of depth. I found myself struggling to take my focus off of how lengthy it was. For a track like “A Whisp Of The Atlantic” to work, it would need to have enough impact and diversity to fully pull you in, and take you away from thinking about how long the track is. but for me, my main take-away from this track was how long it was, and that is something that shouldn’t have been at the forefront.
What made this even more ironic, is that the following track “The Nothingness and the Devil” manages to create a similar level of atmosphere and impact, and cram it in to a five and a half minute timeframe. As a result, this following track almost makes the opener irrelevant.
What’s more, is that “The Nothingness and the Devil” is one of four tracks that were released prior to the EP, and with the tracks, minus the opener, adding up to 4, this means that there are no other new listens to get stuck into.
While I completely seemed to gloss over its initial release, “Feverish” was actually released first, out of all four teasers. But even as a fresh listen for me personally, I found myself not fully being gripped by the track.
The final two tracks on the EP, were the two that I had heard prior, “Desperado” and “Death Diviner”. The former I found to be pretty solid upon my first listen, and the latter was the clear highlight of the EP.
In conclusion, I felt that a lot more effort could’ve been made to embrace this project more as an EP, and perhaps with that accesptance, would’ve come a more solid listen.
Favourite Tracks: The Nothingness and the Devil | Death Diviner
Least Favourite Track: A Whisp of the Atlantic