A Sense Of Purpose review by In Flames

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  • Released: Apr 1, 2008
  • Sound: 9
  • Lyrics: 7
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.1 (298 votes)
In Flames: A Sense Of Purpose

Sound — 9
The first thing I noticed when I first heard "The Mirror's Truth" is the fact that the guys are really trying to make up for the lack of lead melody on the newer albums - and they're doing it quite successfully if I may add... I was quite impressed to hear Jesper and Bjrn doing some serious melody work on each song. One thing that personally thrilled me was the return of the acoustic guitar interludes we oh-so missed in the past few records, which give a folkish, old-school feel to the album. These can be heard as an intro to "Sleepless Again" and an interlude on "Alias". However, the production quality is somehow weak, at least with the guitars, which seem to have a very weak distortion that kills the overall impression. The other instruments, the drums, bass guitar and the synth are very well made and I've got no complaints what'soever to this part. This would be a 10, if only the guitars were a bit sharper. This is harldy Melodic Death Metal, so if you're expecting a new Jester Race or Whoracle - don't get your hopes up. However, I like to call this album a mix of everything In Flames made since Lunar Strain, as we can hear the melody of the old and the accessibility of the new - a bite for every taste.

Lyrics — 7
Okay, now for the lyrics. They're not made all that bad, but their idea is sometimes quite irritating. We've heard these kinds of lyrics way too many times, and they're all about Anders' internal struggles and problems. Sure, some people like that - and the fact that they can relate to these songs, but it's already overused and it sometimes seems that they are added just so the song wouldn't be instrumental tracks. In my opinion, these lyrics are well put, and aside from a few flaws they fit in very well. On the other hand, hearing lyrics like "I feel like shit, but at least I feel something" means something is seriously wrong with our favorite pioneers of Melodic Death Metal, which were introduced to us with those heavily-inspired legendary fantasy/mythology/astrology lyrics we all loved to hear. These lyrics we have today are over-used, and In Flames should really try and be more "global" with them, as "personal" is already old news.

Overall Impression — 8
When all is summed up, we have one decent album. In Flames put quite a lot of effort in this record, obviously trying to please both sides of the coin - the old and the new fans. If you didn't like Reroute To Remain, Soundtrack To Your Escape and Come Clarity, you definetly won't like this, but if you're searching for something new and fresh - I say you buy the record and take a listen.

4 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I Walk Alone
    Anders should sing for CoB, they need a vocalist like him. Anyways, I love this album (even though I only have 2 of their CDs). It's nothing like Lunar Strain but I can still thoroughly enjoy both albums.
    I'm really disappointed with this album. The clean vocals are just plain bad on this one. The guitars are much better but the songs really tend to sound the same and the vocals don't help at all. It's just way too poppy to be In Flames. I was listening to it wondering if I got the right CD. I just hope they'll release another album like Whoracle or The Jester Race...THE HIVE!!! \m/