For I Am King – Revengeance
It’s always interesting to discover new metal from other corners of the world, and one such find was the debut EP by Amsterdam based For I Am King. What caught my attention was the fact that they had a female vocalist, apart from, of course, the curiosity of digging into current Dutch music. Sadly though, I was not very impressed, and you’ll discover why as you read on.
The EP fades in with the opening track “The Haunted”. The screechy female growls come in as an unpleasant surprise, and the layering makes it worse. The track begins with a very old school thrash influence, but brings in the modern blend with breakdowns and guitar solos. You don’t even need to be two minutes into the song to get overwhelmed by all that’s happening. It’s a multitude of elements and influences, and production that borders on chaos.
The second track, titled “The Beast Within” brings out the magnificent drumming and guitar work. The twin riffing and the solos are a stand-out in the song. This is followed by “There will be blood”, the shortest song on the EP that insignificantly passes on without requiring any extra attention.
The EP concludes with the title track- “Revengeance”. It was what I had been waiting for from when I pressed ‘play’, and I was secretly glad that there was at least one track from the 4-song EP that made the listen worthwhile. It picks up pace at the very beginning, with hints of melodic interjections along with traditional metalcore rhythms. The interlude, the guitar solos and the choice of words and pace in the vocal track are quite reminiscent of Arch Enemy. Nevertheless, “Revengeance” is one of the better compositions on the album, and leaves you with a good taste in your mouth.
On the whole, For I Am King’s ‘Revengeance’ was no revolutionary discovery. The songwriting can easily be termed predictable by a seasoned metal listener. The drumming is brilliant throughout, and the guitars definitely need a mention too. The fade-ins are a bit overdone, and take away the punch the songs could have had from the start! However, the vocals, for me, bring down the standard of the music as a whole. I can’t even judge the vocalist for her skill accurately because of the way the growls have been produced.
Having said all this, I also must add that I would love to watch them live before being the typical critic and writing them off just when they are stepping into the metal scene. A debut need not define a band, and can in fact, give them more clarity in terms of where they want to go. So if you like metalcore, do check out For Am I King here.