The Haunted - The Dead Eye
Century Media
13 songs (54:56)
Release year: 2006
The Haunted, Century Media
Reviewed by Dylan
Excitement level : Neutral. Looking at the cover of The Haunted’s latest release, I don’t really have my expectations set too high. Sure, rEVOLVEr had a little too much commercial accessibility, sure, Peter Dolving’s voice leaned too far on the side of shouts that contained the typical metalcore boredom. Still, there were some good riffs on that album, and a few of the songs stuck in my head a little more than 30 minutes. Anyway, back to the matter at hand.

Excitement level: Declining. After the generic, 58 second intro “track”, I am greeted by a riff that sounds like the offspring of what happens when you mate a watered down death riff with a watered down melodic line, played at a mid-paced tempo, topped off by a singer who enjoys his anthemic choruses. For some strange reason, I have the feeling that the rest of the album will carry out like this. But then…about 2:33 into The Flood I am greeted by…. singing.

Excitement level: Almost non-existent. This is not the energetically uplifting singing of DragonForce frontman ZP Theart, nor the spellbinding, virtuosic display of the kind of majesty that can be found within a human voice, a ‘la Blind Guardian’s own Hansi Kürsch. This is Nu metal. Plain and simple, pseudo-depressing, whispered vocals that kill what little energy this song had. Dolving even throws in some of those repeated phrases that get slightly louder and angrier, to make you think he is losing his mind right then and there (As found in The Cynic). Unfortunately, by now I have a pretty accurate idea of what the rest of the album will sound like. Each and every song more or less follows this formula. Never really going fast enough to remotely be considered thrash metal, though not melodic enough to be considered worthwhile melodic death metal.

The main riff in The Drowning is easily digestible and somewhat interesting, but once again, is sandwiched in between weak, completely un-metal vocals and uninteresting rhythms. As you have probably already guessed, the production is clean, but pretty lifeless (though the bass has a nice growling tone to it). Lyrically, I think Dolving could have done much better. I’m not asking for anatomically graphic death metal lyrics or fantastical power metal tales, but I think as a listener, I deserve something more insightful than “Keep your sticky fingers off me, I hate the stench of you, sickening and stale…” I’ll spare the rest. The album as a whole reminds me very much of Soundtrack To Your Escape, from fellow Gothenburgers, In Flames, with the same commercial leanings, but even that debacle was more aggressive than this. This album suffers from its uninspiring predictability, a vocal performance from Peter Dolving that sounds like he is trying to hard with his screams, and faking emotion with his singing, with riffs that are generic, mid-paced chord chugging amid some slight MeloDeath leanings. I can really only see this record being valued by new kids to the metal scene, as a gateway album. But even then, it is not a good representation of the parts of metal that make it what it is. It doesn’t make you feel powerful, it doesn’t push any boundaries, but most of all, it does not excite or enthrall the listener. Considering that the core songwriters of this band, brothers Anders Björler and Jonas Björler were part of the Gothenburg milestone, Slaughter Of The Soul, are now part of an album like this, becomes a depressing thought to ponder on. While The Haunted’s earlier efforts were nothing groundbreaking, they were still good, solid slabs of melodic death. Still, like pretty much everything humans experience, bands change. Hopefully next time they can turn their direction around and provide something a little fresher, and a lot more captivating.

Note: Below is the video for "The Drowning". In time the video may becom eoutdated and fail to play.

Killing Songs :
The Shifter is sorta cool
Dylan quoted 41 / 100
Ken quoted 80 / 100
Jason quoted 75 / 100
Other albums by The Haunted that we have reviewed:
The Haunted - Exit Wounds reviewed by Goat and quoted 73 / 100
The Haunted - Unseen reviewed by Goat and quoted 83 / 100
The Haunted - Versus reviewed by Goat and quoted 76 / 100
The Haunted - rEVOLVEr reviewed by Jay and quoted 67 / 100
The Haunted - Caught on Tape DVD reviewed by Jay and quoted no quote
To see all 8 reviews click here
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