Within Temptation - Resist
Spinefarm Records
Dark Symphonic Metal
10 songs (47:28)
Release year: 2019
Within Temptation, Spinefarm Records
Reviewed by Ben

Hooray! Another half decade has passed since the last Within Temptation album was released and here we are with a brand new album, Resist, and a slightly refined sound from these Dutch Symphonic Metallers. Of course with each new album comes an outcry from the braindead that Within Temptation have "sold out." Dudes, I've been hearing that since the fucking Silent Force was released back in what 2004? The outcries of butthurt seem to focus on the electronic aspect of this album, but as a fan who is familiar with Sinead from The Unforgiving album, this seems tame in comparison. Yes, there are more electronics in the band's sound palette these days, but this isn't EDM, and there's still orchestral passages and strings. For the most part, the music does its job well in conveying a dark and oppressive atmosphere. Lots of bands do the whole "dystopia" theme, but this captures the vibe of a subjugated population as opposed to say, the anger and rage that thrashier bands tend to exude.

One of the traits from the Hydra album that has been carried over to Resist is the use of guest vocals. This time around the number has been reduced to three, and the roles of the singers have been greatly diminished. That isn't to say they are pointless, but take for example Anders Frieden. The In Flames vocalist is featured on the track Raise Your Banner and he literally says three words, "Blood For Freedom!" and that's it. While being effective in its placement in the song, fifteen years ago he'd just be credited in the booklet rather than given a "featuring" tag. Another thing to point out here is the incredible airy atmosphere imparted by the drums. The first verse is almost all bass and toms to give a real tribal, folkish feel to an otherwise very futuristic song. I had to get over my unnatural hatred for Papa Roach that stems from being in high school when Last Resort came out and realizing they ripped off Iron Maiden's Ghenghis Khan riff in order to listen to The Reckoning. Jacoby sings a verse and for that verse the band kinda sounds like Skillet. Not bad, but nothing too amazing. The last guest vocalist is some guy name Jasper and the song is a boring ballad called Firelight. This reminds me of the clip from the Some Kind Of Monster documentary where Torbin Ulrich is taking to Lars and he says the early tapes of St. Anger sound like a guy yelling in an echo chamber.

So the guest vocalists aren't all that great, but no one listens to Within Temptation for guest singers. Sharon Den Adel and her one of a kind voice and talent are what draw us in. Not to downplay the band too much, there is an actual guitar solo on this album and The Unforgiving album had several, but Sharon is the main attraction here. Before writing Resist she released her solo album My Indigo. Working on this album reignited her writing for Within Temptation and here we go. I point out that little tidbit because vocally, she is obviously using some of the techniques she picked up while recording My Indigo. Endless War has a cool affectation placed on the title in the chorus that gives Sharon a different type of accent. Mercy Mirror is a monster of a song! This is a powerful ballad, not a power ballad, that combines the trademark dark atmosphere of the band with the catchy, but lamenting chorus. Like Frozen from The Heart Of Everything but better. If some regular pop artist were to release this song, they'd be instantly legitimized as a "serious" artist and get a new hashtag trending for their transformation. Supernova is on the opposite end of the emotional spectrum in that it's a fun lighthearted song. While being upfront and dominant in the intro, the keyboards aren't anything to be afraid of here.

Within Temptation have put out an album that fans should be pretty stoked about. I personally think The Unforgiving is their best album, and Resist is almost at the same level, just needs more guitar solos! The break that Sharon took to do My Indigo really truly did help out the band's evolution, and from what I've heard of the album on YouTube, it's really great stuff. Everyone always compares Sharon to Kate Bush anyway so there you go, My Indigo is Den Adel unleashed without the constraints of metal.

Killing Songs :
Raise Your Banner, Endless War, Mercy Mirror, In Vain
Ben quoted 78 / 100
Other albums by Within Temptation that we have reviewed:
Within Temptation - The Unforgiving reviewed by Goat and quoted 81 / 100
Within Temptation - The Heart Of Everything reviewed by Ben and quoted 76 / 100
Within Temptation - Enter reviewed by Ben and quoted 72 / 100
Within Temptation - The Silent Force reviewed by Jay and quoted 85 / 100
Within Temptation - Mother Earth reviewed by Sin and quoted 92 / 100
1 readers voted
Your quote was: 45.
Change your vote

There are 0 replies to this review. Last one on Tue Apr 21, 2020 8:17 am
View and Post comments