Amaranthe are an odd bunch. Their fusion of soaring European power metal with rapid-fire EDM and pop melodies makes them purveyors of some of the most infectious metal tunes you’ll ever hear, but on their previous efforts – The Nexus and their self-
As a result of Jacob Hansen’s über-polished production with its excess of layered keyboards and synths, listening to Amaranthe, with their trio of vocalists and frenetic genre-bending, is also a little like drowning in sound at times. On Massive Addictive, it’s clear from the outset that they’re sticking to this formula. Opener Dynamite is laden with soulless synths, sadly generic riffing and Elize Ryd’s squeaky-clean vocals bordering on shrill. Lead single Drop Dead Cynical has a stomping, industrial sound that’s rather fun, but the clumsy passing around of clean and harsh vocal lines quickly gets old and the chorus sounds like it’s been lifted from that Imagine Dragons tack. Amaranthe have a knack for writing catchy songs, but ultimately this album is another formulaic exercise in style over substance.