Re-Armed – Ignis Aeternum (Black Lion Records)Friday, 26th June 2020
Re-Armed have been playing the symphonic melodeath game for a while now, forming back in 2001 and releasing their first full-length back in 2012. Fast-forward to the present and the band has hit their fourth album, Ignis Aeternum, and it seems that the band is continuing to hit the mark within the genre. Just don’t expect anything extra, so to speak.
Lots of swirling melodies and furious moments abound, and the band has done their due diligence when it comes to understanding the path that was laid by bands like Dark Tranquillity and older In Flames. There’s a bit more modern feel here (as their material has had over the years) and some clean-ish vocals, but they don’t overdo them to the point where you know they are coming around the next bend. The band’s strong point is actually when they are going at a slower pace, such as “Words Left Unsaid” and “Resistance,” where the melodies are given plenty of breathing room and space. The synths do play a large role in the foundation, but again, there’s a bit of restraint to ensure that the band can still pick up and go with some more raging tempos and aggression, such as the one-two opening number of “Dive Within” and “Beyond the Horizon.” If there’s one fault to be had here, it’s that Re-Armed have an entirely familiar tone to them and if you check out a few seconds blindly, there’s a good chance you wouldn’t be able to identify them by name.
That said, those who are suckers for all things melodic death metal will definitely get a jolt out of Ignis Aeternum. The melodies are enjoyable, as is the slightly heavier approach and lack of reliance on clean vocals to get the point across.