The Jester Race/Black-Ash Inherritance Review

artist: In Flames date: 08/24/2010 category: compact discs
In Flames: The Jester Race/Black-Ash Inherritance
Released: May 14, 2002
Genre: Rock
Styles: Death Metal/Black Metal, Heavy Metal
Number Of Tracks: 14
For those who missed either/or the first time around, this release offers greater incentive to discover this seminal Swedish heavy metal band.
 Sound: 9.6
 Lyrics: 9
 Overall Impression: 10
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (5) 12 comments vote for this album:
overall: 9.7
The Jester Race/Black-Ash Inherritance Reviewed by: duncang, on april 04, 2006
7 of 8 people found this review helpful

Sound: The sound of classic In Flames, wonderful. Catchy riffs, demonic vocals, incredible drums. This album has a lot to offer, Ander's debut for In Flames is very, very impressive, sounding gritty, but at the same time, very full. This album takes the aggression of Lunar Strain, the melody of Subterranean and a whole lot more. This is the sound of a legendary metal band in the making. // 10

Lyrics: The lyrics (where understandable) are brilliant on this album, outshining all of their later work, partiularly on December Flower. The only real fault in these lyrics are the repetition of a couple of themes, though this is barely recognisable unless looking at a sheet of paper with the lyrics on them. // 9

Overall Impression: 01. Moonshield - the definitive song of In Flame's early work, starting with their mellow acoustic qualities, but also showing their aggression. This song has remained in their live set for years, proving its worth against 8 other albums. A brilliant opener for an album, with an infectious lead guitar. 02. The Jester's Dance - yet another song to get stuck into your head, there is a wonderful use of delay here, to give the guitar an epic feel. When that lead comes in, it feels wonderful. More rhythm and bass is piled on this, to create the In Flames sound. Being an instrumental, its beauties are clearer to see (vocals often cover up details of instrumentation, particularly with metal bands). This song fades away leaving no memory of Moonsheild. That takes some doing. 03. Artefacts Of The Black Rain - a torrent of even more infectious riffs fly at you for this song, with In Flames signature guitar harmonies shining, particularly in the solo. A good vocal performance from Anders also. 04. Graveland - beginning as a scratchy demo sound, but rising up to a better sound, the drums here make you tap your feet. The addition of speech from Anders gives off some menace, a good metal characteristic. 05. Lord Hypnos - classic riff, catchy as hell. Yet more proof that In Flames are the modern masters of the guitar harmony (the all-time masters being Iron Maiden, of course). There are some great lyrics here too, this song also shows In Flames' close relationship with Dark Tranquility. The breakdown halfway through sounds a bit out of place, but soon establishes itself. More speaking here. 06. Dead Eternity - this song is a typical In Flames song, and it could have come off of any of their albums, except for Soundtrack To Your Escape. Some deep lyrics, and a wild attack add together to mix Lunar Strain with things to come for Whoracle. 07. The Jester Race - catchy drums, and another delayed-clean guitar part (the same as The Jester's Dance, maybe this is Part 2 of the Jester pairing? ). Very catchy chorus, thanks to Anders. 08. December Flower - one of the more brutal songs you're ever going to hear with 'flower' in the title, trust me. A relentless performance from the band, on all quarters. Very nice solo as well. 09. Wayfaerer - another instrumental, this time less mellow. A very good song here, which would be ruined by vocals, its a good job they didn't use them here. Some nice keyboards thrown in there as well, and some of the best rhythm on the album. Then about halfway it goes all hair-metal on you... a bit random, and not too nice really. Definitely the lowlight of the album. The solo sounds like Slash, which I suppose can be taken well, but certainly wasn't expected, or needed. But after that it reverts to good ol' melodeath metal. 10. Dead God In Me - forgettable song, far more brutal than anything else, much less melody, and while it is still a good song, not much by the sky-high standards of this album. Goes very weird at the end, is that a baby crying? Woah... suddenly there is a huge scream, and the song restarts... weird. 11. Goliaths Disarm Their Davids - here we are, back to normal, a brilliant song. Though it does sound very similar to Artefacts Of The Black Rain. See the view on that song. 12. Gyroscope - another Moonsheild style song, starting with acoustics. This song was in In Flames' live set for a long time as well, until Soundtrack To Your Escape/Reroute To Remain. Very good song, good rhythm, catchy lead, and amazing vocals, and backing vocals in the chorus. 13. Acoustic Medley - now this is beautiful. Just beautiful. Full of melodies, interlocked, and this basically sums up the album. Using pieces of songs from across the album (most noticably Artefacts Of The Black Rain) in an acoustic form, this sounds brilliant, particularly with the strings coming in towards the end. 14. Behind Space - this live track left on the end gives newbies to In Flames a great reason to look even further back and purchase their very earliest work. A storming aggressive monster of a track, I can easily imagine this sparking moshing mayhem. This is another song which has withstood time, and is still in In Flames' setlist. Overall, classic album. Definitely worth a purchase for any metal fan. // 10

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overall: 9.7
The Jester Race/Black-Ash Inherritance Reviewed by: metalreaper450, on october 10, 2006
3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Sound: I left a comment on this review but there were only three on here so, here goes. This is definitley my favorite In Flames album. This album doesn't have a bad song on here. Each song has a good rythmn with heavy riffs, good melodies, and nice solos/leads. The actual quality of the recordings is a little lacking due to the lack of funds that the band had to make the album. They used their abilities as musicians to make up for the lack in good equipment. The overall sound of this album is awesome, heavy and melodic. // 10

Lyrics: This is the debut for Anders, and he definitely comes through. His vocals are a cross between growls and screams. His vocals are a little rough, but the lyrics definitley make up for it. The lyrics are mostly about mankind and human nature. The recouring theme for this album is Jesters, refering to humans and humanity. // 9

Overall Impression: In Flames, among At The Gates And others, were the fathers and kings of melodic death metal. They blend mesmerizing melodies, with skull cracking rythmns. Each song is it's own conversation. 01. Moonshield - starts out with a fast acoustic riff that turns into an awesome main riff. This song also features a long, melodic acoustic interlude. 02. Jester Race - this song is one of my favorite instrumentals ever. This song sticks in your head and the harmonized guitar parts will enter your soul. 03. Artifacts Of The Black Rain - this is my second favorite song on the album. The guitar leads in this song are amazing. 04. Graveland - this song talks about losing the war with human nature, "for each day of war is a failure of man, enslaved to her mordial genes, illusions bleed from the fetid cores, bent to their rotten extremes." 05. Lord Hypnos - this is a very catchy riff and surprisingly enough a catchy vocal as well. 06. Dead Eternity - this song starts out with a nice fast guitar lead and breaks down into a heavy harmonized riff. nice. 07. The Jester Race - title track that delivers. They use delay nicely in this song. The lyrics are also nice in this song. 08. December Flower - I can't say enough about this song. This is my favorite song of all time. A fast heavy riff to start out, then a nice lead followed by a blisering solo that surrenders to no one. Awesome. 09. Wayfaerer - nice instrumental with a guest keyboard solo. 10. Dead God In Me - this song is very heavy and uses harmonies nicely. 11. Goliaths Disarm Their Davids - awesome lyrics complemented with good riffs and melodies. 12. Gyroscope - a release from Whoracle which is awesome. 13. Acoustic Medley - one of my favorite acoustic songs of all time. It is a mesh of all of In Flames popular meledies including Artifacts of the Black Rain, Jotun, and others. 14. Behind Space Live - one of In Flames original songs which exemplifies their sound, kind of rough vocals though. Overall every song on this album has an original riff, melody, harmonization, solo etc. In Flames is an awesome band filled with musicianship. Jester Race! Buy it! I would kill someone if I lost this album or if it got stolen. // 10

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overall: 9.7
The Jester Race/Black-Ash Inherritance Reviewed by: FlightofIcarus, on august 24, 2010
3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Sound: What can be found here on this particular In Flames album is the classic sound that made them so famous to begin with. Melodic death metal was still a fairly new genre at the time, and while the prior two releases from this band (Lunar Strain, Subterranean) were also excellent, In Flames surely cemented their place in Melodic death metal history with this masterpiece. This disc contains both The Jester Race album, along with the Black-Ash Inheritance EP, which was released between TJR and Whoracle. From start to finish, this disc is loaded with non-stop goodness. Classic In Flames is characterized by lots of memorable twin-guitar harmonies over a super heavy rhythm background, melodic acoustic breaks, and superb growled vocals. It can all be found in abundance here. Every song flows masterfully, and will leave you wanting more. // 10

Lyrics: The lyrics on this album are very well written, and definitely top notch. There seems to be a deeper meaning behind all of the songs, albeit a similar theme on some of them (There seems to be a metaphorical message overall about the stupid side of mankind and destroying ourselves). Anders belts out these lyrics with sheer aggression and conviction that demand attention. // 9

Overall Impression: This album did a superior job of expanding upon the concepts explored in the previous 2 In Flames releases, and as a result, became a groundbreaking release. It is still considered by many to be the best In Flames album nearly a decade and a half later. Every song on here is amazing, but if I must pick some standouts, then Moonshield, Artifacts of the Black Rain, Dead Eternity, the title track, December Flower, and Dead god in me are regular listens (Ok, I pretty much cheated by picking half of the album out, haha). The previous two sections of this review explain what I love about this album, and well, there really isn't much to hate about it. The only slight (and I mean SLIGHT) flaw I can give against it is the production quality. While very good sounding overall, later In Flames albums benefited from even better production quality and bigger recording budgets. It's nothing that takes away from the quality of the music though. This would be immediately replaced if it ever found it's way out of my collection. Bottom line, this is a must-have for any fan of melodic metal, or in my opinion, any true music enthusiast in general. This is death metal with much, much more to offer. // 10

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overall: 8.7
The Jester Race/Black-Ash Inherritance Reviewed by: unregistered, on march 14, 2005
2 of 3 people found this review helpful

Sound: This CD is great it sounds very different from other bands. This is a combination of the albums Jester Race and Black-Ash Inherritance. But Black-Ash Inherritance is pretty rare to find and I have never seen Jester Race so that one may be too. So with that out of the way the guitar is really cool and the riffs are my favorite riffs I have ever heard. though it does get hard to listen to all of the way through because of the guitar tone it's very crisp and it's almost hard to hear what they are playing sometimes, but the leads and harmony's are great. If you aren't a fan of deep almost growling vocals you might not like this one. // 8

Lyrics: The lyrics are pretty good though I'm not quite sure what they are talking about sometimes. Anders is a good metal singer there really are no singing parts in this one like there other releases (Clayman, Colony, Reroute To Remain). The lyrics go good with the music you can hear the energy when Anders is singing. // 8

Overall Impression: If you like any of there later releases you will enjoy this one or if you were a fan of them before Anders became vocalist of the albums Lunar strain and Subterranean (which they also combined for one CD) you'll like this one alot and find that some songs are redone with Anders as voclaist. I really like this album it's very unique some of my favorites are Moonshield, Behind Space, Artifacts Of Black Rain, Dead Eternity, Lord Hypnos, and acoustic medly. If it where stolen or lost I would buy it agan in a heartbeat. // 10

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overall: 10
The Jester Race/Black-Ash Inherritance Reviewed by: legions, on october 20, 2005
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Sound: The first in flames song I ever heard was "Dead God In Me" and from then on I was completely hooked. I started to learn how to play songs from this alnum and I realized how technical and god-like the guitar work really is. There is superb music on this record and this is by-far my favorite In Flames record. because everything really goes downhill from this CD on in their career. This CD is a must-have for all fans of melodic death metal, it realy defines the genre. // 10

Lyrics: The lyrics are good, they are kind of hard to understand without taking the time to analyze them. But they are good for the style. The vocalist is a pretty good death metal screamer. He's not the best, but it really works well and accentuates the music. // 10

Overall Impression: This album is possibly the greatest death metal CD I own, and I am absolutely in love with it. The most impressive songs would have to be "Dead God In Me" and "The Jester Race" they are both superb works of art. And any fan of melodic death metal should have this CD in their collection. I love every song on this CD, I love the production quality. Everything sounds great, this is the best In Flames you can hear. If this CD were stolen or lost I would think twice or take the time to hesitate before going out and buying it again. Neither should you, go buy this now. // 10

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