This album took me off completely guard for several reasons. Firstly, when I saw it was a Willowtip release, I expected some form of Death/Grind, then after reading that it was Melodic Death Metal I became somewhat confused and disappointed. Why on earth would Willowtip release a Melodic Death Metal CD and why are people still playing this lifeless, stagnant genre of music. Sure it was cool eight years ago, but it has become so incredibly stale over the last few years that it’s almost painful to listen to.
Well, the answer to both questions is because ARSIS kick some serious ass. Sure, they do play Melodic Death Metal, but this is far from the pointless drivel that most bands tend to put out. Instead, this album is a much-needed kick in the ass to the genre, as they combine fantastic and engaging songwriting with harsh, piercing riffs infused with melody. The vocals switch between Black Metal shrieks and Death Metal growls, but both work perfectly within the context of the tracks.
Even if your interest in Melodic Death Metal has dwindled over the past few years, I would highly recommend you give ARSIS a try, they’ll renew your faith. (Online June 15, 2004)