Album Review: Amorphis - Queen Of Time

Artist: Amorphis

Album: Queen Of Time

Genre: Melodic Death Metal

Review by Steve Jenkins

This is one album that I have actually sat down and listened to at least half a dozen time before even typing a single sentence. Amorphis have created something that I've had to digest and then ponder, with this album Queen Of Time, the Finnish melodic death metal outfit have restored my faith in heavy music.

Straight away from the very beginning you're attention is drawn to "The Bee" with its lots going on and a very memorable chorus that is extremely catchy. Which is something that a lot of European melodic death metal acts are known for, take Soilwork for example. The things that caught my attention right off the bat with this opening track is that it's quite simple, but there's a lot of background melody and beautiful riffs that reel you in. They've created an illusion with their sound and I can picture it whilst listening to it.

Now, for the average listener there's quite a lot of complexity going on with this album, maybe that's what has made me connect with Queen Of Time so well, it's actually really refreshing. With so much basic songwriting getting all of the recognition lately, it's nice to be reminded that there are in fact incredible bands out there making this sort of music. Sure, some of their songs might seem over-the-top and theatrical almost, but that's what makes it so enjoyable to listen to. It's not angry or aggressive. It's spectacular sounding metal.

Another standout track would have to be "Daughter Of Hate" which pretty much included every element under the sun. There's a lot going on in this track, with lots of twists and turns, which will either please the listener or turn you away. To me when I listen to songs like this, it's storytelling, it's something more than music, there's a path that you have to follow to get to the next stage. Much like what Dream Theater do, it's progressive and there's definitely a theme behind the writing process. It might seem like a lot to take in for just wanting to listen to a heavy metal album, but trust me, it's worth it. There's dramatic moments, there's dark moments, there's uplifting moments. Queen Of Time makes you feel things, which is something I don't often get from heavy music these days.

Amorphis have created something that I will stand the test of time when it comes to the Top Albums Of 2018 lists. This is a deep album that displays many elements that heavy music can take on, and the composition and production is near flawless. For someone that wasn't very familiar with Amorphis to begin with, 13 studio albums into their career, they've released Queen Of Time and they've definitely won over a new fan and someone that's going to listen to their entire back catalogue of releases. Europe still reigns supreme when it comes to Melodic Death Metal.

9 out of 10.

Queen Of Time is out now via Nuclear Blast Records.

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