Sometimes, you instinctively know an album is going to be good after only hearing the opening few lines of the first song – and a release that absolutely falls into that category is Maximalism, the brand new offering from Swedish melodic metallers Amaranthe. Always a consistent band, this album is no exception to this trend and it’s an all-round great listen that easy to connect with and features some absolute bangers!
Maximalism immediately grabs you with the ‘title’ track Maximize. The introduction is fairly simplistic, yet is oh-so-effective at drawing you in, and when the chorus kicks in, it hits you like a tonne of bricks – and I challenge you to listen to this without wanting to sing along at the top of your lungs! This is surely a song that will pack a real punch live, and it’s followed up by another incredibly catchy number, a song entitled Boomerang that will certainly leaving you wanting to come back for more. Another fantastic inclusion is fifth track On The Rocks – the “na na na”s are fantastic, and the little guitar riffs peppered about the track are incredible, and later track Supersonic is an energetic piece that keeps the momentum going with a great pace from the drums and powerfully delivered group vocals.
It’s not just all about the fast and hard-hitting numbers though, with Amaranthe also including some stunning ballads in the forms of Limitless and closer Endlessly, showing an emotive and passionate side to the band with some spine-tingling performances from both singers and instrumentalists alike. It’s always good when a band can perform to a high standard in two distinct styles and Amaranthe definitely achieve this.
Unfortunately, Maximalism does take a bit of a rut with third track That Song, which is possibly the weakest song of the whole album. It’s not the most memorable or catchy of songs – and indeed, I felt somewhat confused when it was announced it would be the first single from Maximalism because there’s so many better songs than this one. It’s lacking in bite and feels somewhat lacklustre when compared to tracks such as the aforementioned ones – it’s not a bad song but it’s also not a great song, and it’s a track that is all-too-easy to skip. However, as part of a bigger picture – one weak song out of twelve isn’t bad!
As a whole,this is a fantastic album and a seriously addictive piece that will result in you keeping on coming back for more!