Talk about coming full circle. First up is the obvious fact that Peter Dolving returns to destroy the mic. Also, original/ founding member Anders Björler is back and with him and Jensen on guitars, no one is safe from their twin guitar attacks. The bands debut wasn't a good effort while albums two and three with Marco handling the vocal duties was just too Metalcore for my taste. Now, we return to the Thrash roots of yore and what an album we are graced with.
"No Compromise" opens up the set and they live by those words. You are punched in the face really hard. The metallic riffs are about as memorable and filler free as an AT THE GATES tune. The drums reek of punishing while Peter's voice is what I long for in this genre. Simply put. I welcome back this original line-up with open arms. "99" doesn't rattle off machine gun drumming so much here except during the choruses. This one is pretty simple, but still delivers the goods. This is nothing short of causing you to run to the medicine cabinet and grabbing a bottle of Tylenol because they don't let up here either and don't plan to for the duration of the disc. "Abysmal" shows the mic man exercising some of his clean parts which basically only exist during the intro of the song before going full throttle screamaholic. The solo represented on here is what you have come to expect from Jensen and Björler. Rejoice!
"All Against All" sounds like it has commercial potential. Call me nuts, but I hear hints of an ATREYU vibe. Now, call me nuts, but it just has that feeling of being harsh blended in with catchy hooks that could be heard on radio right now. I don't know. Either way, the song still crushes the competition hands down. You know, just with every band and each release, there is bound to be some controversy amongst the fans and I am quite sure that the die hards who want nothing more than just in your face beats and riffs will find a way to complain about "Nothing Right." Peter utilizes his cleans here, but the music is also a bit more versatile. It's got a melodic vibe as well, but it still will ring your bell, while others may disagree. The guys offer an album that is a bit more varied than their last two outings, but still manages to crush you by your throat.
As a bonus, you will receive three extra tracks to make it your worth while. This is their best release since their inception. Don't think that these guys have gone soft just because they utilize clean pipes along with clean breaks. None of these tracks are going to make commercial radio anytime soon. Just like their opening song. "No Compromise!" THE HAUNTED bows down to no one!!! (Online January 19, 2005)