Captivity & Devourment
It’s completely understandable to be unfamiliar with Swedish band Armageddon. Sure, it features former Arch Enemy guitarist Christopher Amott (whose brother, Michael, is known for being in Arch Enemy and Carcass); however, there’s little question that Arch Enemy is a much bigger name than Armageddon. However, one listen to “Captivity and Devourment” will make one wonder why. The song features blistering leads, neat riffs, and solid songwriting; it’s everything melodeath fans could ask for. Captivity & Devourment isn’t just a good album; it’s a statement for a band that clearly could use one.
Thankfully, the title track isn’t the only successful entry from Armageddon. “Rendition” has a throwback death metal riff that’s deep and almost sludgy, complemented by Christopher’s rapid-fire leads and melodies. In fact, it doesn’t take long to really appreciate how impressive Mr. Amott’s work is on the album. Thankfully, the rest of the band is happy to supply quality. Vocalist Matt Hallquist does his best Christian Alvestam impression, with an impressive deep growl that complements the occasional clean melody. Also, the rhythm section is solid, even if they fall to the background from time to time.
Overall, there’s really not much that won’t lure in fans of thrash-y melodeath. Sure, you’re not getting the freshest, most original ideas on the planet, but when you get to head-bang and air guitar this much during a record, a band is clearly doing something right. Arch Enemy might be better known, but in 2015, they aren’t the better band featuring an Amott guitarist. (Nicholas Senior)