There is a lot to like about the new release from Danish Melodic Metallers SUBMISSION: a stellar production, thick, heavy riffs and at times a galloping rhythm that can often carry a listener right through a record and leaving them wanting more. Yep, a lot to like for probably a lot of people; I just don’t happen to be one of those people. While the aforementioned elements are certainly good qualities, they come with others that are just too painful not to bring this offering burning down around its somewhat commendable attributes.
What pulls the songs down on “Code Of Conspiracy” is a sophomoric and sickly sweet mixing in of clean vocals, and as clichéd as it has become to point out, the now overwrought Neo-Thrash style a la the Gothenburg scene which a decade ago was fresh and vibrant but has now been beaten like a dead mule. Incorporating the mundane recent musing of DARKANE with the worst vocal elements of Metalcore and Emo, SUBMISSION rehash so many tried, tested and now shockingly yawn-inducing facets that it becomes a struggle not to let your mind wander during listening to the album and completely miss whether a song was good or simply the same. Upon multiple listens, unfortunately it’s the latter. While the technical talent of the Danes is easily recognizable, their either original or at least interesting song writing capability is not and doesn’t appear to exist at all. When the band does get on its horse and sound pretty good it is able to harness the earlier days of the Swedish style like THE HAUNTED or preeminent moments from CARNAL FORGE, but these come with such a heavy price in the constant and cheesy choruses and the tendency to slip into Emo world. A track like ‘A Terror Within” is a pretty perfect example of this; it’s forceful and sweeping guitars and rhythm can cause you to perk up and take notice, perhaps even feel a jolt of Metallic fury and head-swaying, however along comes a eye rolling chorus that makes you wonder if you’ve somehow switched over to the new EVERGREEN TERRACE (an AWFUL bad) album.
This formula is pasted down and continued to a tee on almost every song on “Code Of Conspiracy”. While reading up on the band during my travails around the internet, it appears quite a few people are claiming this is a “fresh” and quality release. Don’t buy it (the argument that is), as the album seems so retread is becomes boring realizing that in and of itself. Now, those of you who enjoy a mix of styles and like sweet vocals may just enjoy this album. My recommendation? Seek out drummer Morten Sørensen’s other great Danish band PANZERCHRIST and enjoy their festering brutality and infectious grooves.
(Online September 24, 2009)