Often comparisons are made between DARK TRANQUILLITY and IN FLAMES and mostly they are about the evolution of the bands and comparisons between single albums. The strong IN FLAMES album "Whoracle" was countered by DARK TRANQUILLITY's "The Mind's I" back in 1997.
Just like "Whoracle", "The Mind's I" is a very melodic Death Metal album. In my opinion the main difference between these two CDs is that DARK TRANQUILLITY have been a bit more melancholic and dark. The atmosphere of songs like fast opener "Dreamlore Degenerate" or the dark-melodic "Constant" is just gigantic. No matter, if the band steps on the pedal as during the short, but cool "Zodijackyl Light" or rather operates slow and oppressing as on "Hedon", it always results in a strong track. During the sad-hefty semi ballad "Insanity's Crescendo" singer Mikael Stanne is supported by singer Sara Svensson. The song really goes under the skin and never gets sappy. That's the way that acoustically touched songs should sound like.
Just like with IN FLAMES, the heart piece of the DARK TRANQUILLITY sound is the melodic guitar work. The two guitarists Niklas Sundin and Fredrik Johansson put their melodic guitar harmonies into all of their songs. The sugar almost is dripping from the ears. That way the guys also manage to almost exclusively put damn catchy tunes onto "The Mind's I". You just cannot elude the power and atmosphere of the twelve songs. No matter if fast and Death-y, mid-paced or just purely acoustic. DARK TRANQUILLITY are masters of their trade. The good sound, of course, further strengthens this. The album, btw, has been produced in the well known Studio Fredman by Fredrik Nordström, who also has been responsible for the keyboard overdubs.
I am sure that you have had the feeling with a CD that it is something special. I have this feeling with "The Mind's I". Everything fits here. The purely musical aspects aside, the already mentioned atmosphere and the variety of "The Mind's I" make it a masterpiece, yes even a classic of Melodic Death Metal. Of course you have to hear the album a few times to think so and believe me, I have done so. But believe me. Once this piece of music has grown a hold of your ears, you will not forget it anymore for a long time. For me definitely the best and most varied album of the band.
Check out tips: all. (Online October 16, 2003)