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In Flames – A Sense of Purpose

June 9, 2008 by  

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In Flames – A Sense of Purpose

Artist: In Flames
Album: A Sense of Purpose
Label: Nuclear Blast
Year: 2008
Rating: 5/5

Unless you’ve been living in a cave on a remote Pacific island somewhere, it’s highly unlikely that In Flames would have slipped under your radar. With their ninth album, ‘A Sense of Purpose’, following up such offerings as ‘Come Clarity’, ‘Reroute to Remain’ and ‘Clayman’, you would expect them by now to have mastered their craft. And despite the fact that their craft keeps changing ever so slightly with every album, they really have done exactly that this time.

While ‘Come Clarity’ offered some slightly meatier musicianship in comparison to the lacklustre ‘Soundtrack to Your Escape’, ‘A Sense of Purpose’ goes that extra mile further to ensure that In Flames are firing on all cylinders once more. Opening track ‘The Mirror’s Truth’ sets the tone perfectly, with its squealing guitar solos, pummelling drums, and vocalist Anders Friden’s new found sense of melody in the soaring, gigantic chorus. Elsewhere, the fast-paced thrash of ‘March to the Shore’ sounds like it could easily have been on ‘Clayman’, ‘Disconnected’ boasts another massive chorus, while the slower ‘Alias’ has a brilliant and inspired acoustic middle eight.

Their detractors will tell you that In Flames are a spent force. However, a listen to ‘A Sense of Purpose’ will prove that theory completely and absolutely wrong. In Flames may have taken the hard route to develop their sound and get it perfect, but on ‘A Sense of Purpose’, they have really pulled all the stops out. Not one to miss by any means.

– Toby Davis

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