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2.59 | 12 ratings | 3 reviews
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Album · 2011

Filed under Trance Metal


1. Leave Everything Behind
2. Hunger
3. 1.000.000 Lightyears
4. Automatic
5. My Transition
6. Amaranthine
7. Rain
8. Call Out My Name
9. Enter the Maze
10. Director's Cut
11. Act of Desperation
12. Serendipity


- Elize Ryd / vocals
- Jake E Berg / vocals
- Andy Solveström / vocals
- Olof Mörck / guitars, keyboards
- Johan Andreassen / bass
- Morten Løwe Sørensen / drums

About this release

Released April 13, 2011, on Spinefarm Records.

Thanks to Time Signature for the addition


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Specialists/collaborators reviews

Amaranthe is the self-titled debut album by this Swedish act. The group caught my attention due to the fact that they sounded as if they could be a bit more unique than your everyday metal band and they are that I quickly discovered, as the band mixes melodic power metal ideas with some touches of melodic death metal and some metalcore as well. So there are plenty of influences being thrown into this pot, but what comes out of it isn’t that tasty.

The band actually has not one, not two, but three full-time vocalists. One female vocalist in Elize Ryd and one clean male vocalist in Jake E Berg, both of whom have been touring with popular power metal act Kamelot as session vocalists. The third is a growler, Andy Solveström, whose delivery can sway between melodic death and metalcore, depending on how guitarist Olof Mörck is delivery the riffs at the time, though to be honest I think that what melodic death there is here it’s the smallest element of the band’s sound, making overall this something of a power metal/metalcore hybrid. To be honest while the sound of the album has its merits and enjoyable parts, more often than not it either sounds like one of two things, metal at its most commercial end, or a complete mess. The album had a promising start with Leave Everything Behind but it went all downhill from there.

That’s not to say that the band is not deserving of praise. They’ve clearly tried to deliver something a bit different here and given some honing, could well turn their sound into something a lot more solid. They have three pretty decent vocalists (though I personally find myself most enjoying Jake E Berg’s contributions here) and the instrumentation is generally praiseworthy, although I think they could easily drop the metalcore element and be none the worse for it. Olof Mörck’s lead guitar work is pretty good and he also contributes keyboards to the album, though these don’t always work so well within the sound, at times sounding really out of place such as in second track Hunger and later again in Rain. I think the problem is that the keyboards parts have a tendency to sound very techno influenced, making parts of the album sound like some sort of techno metal which, speaking personally for a moment here, is not something I go looking for in a metal album nor expected to hear.

Amaranthe overall sounds designed to appeal to the masses. The songs are lyrically commercial as is the delivery, despite the common use of Andy Solveström’s growl. Because of the growls I’d wager that metalcore fans will find something to like in Amaranthe’s debut, although the fact that there is also a female vocalist here those into female fronted metal bands may also take some enjoyment from it, though speaking as a fan of female vocals myself, I found myself decidedly bored when listening to the album in order to write this review.

Despite the clear potential, things haven’t really worked out for Amaranthe on their debut, but in their defence they have caught my attention enough that I would check out any future work they do, just to see if they can hone the good ideas in the album and iron out the bad and perhaps try to tailor their music more towards a metal crowd, because at the moment that’s the main problem, I can honestly see only a select few groups of metal fans actually finding any enjoyment in the album and one of them is certainly not power metal, which musically is one of the main ingredients of the band. As a whole Amaranthe is certainly a listenable album, but unfortunately things just don’t go beyond that, leaving it in decidedly below average territory, with what points it’s been given mostly for the skills of the three vocalists and some nice guitar ideas. Despite the extremer side to the band this is all things considered a pop metal album and even with one such as myself who listens to some of the more commercially orientated metal bands such as Within Temptation find that it leaves a rather bitter taste in my mouth.

(Originally written for Heavy Metal Haven)
Time Signature
Director's cut...

Genre: modern power metal

A strong debut by Swedish/Danish modern power metal act Amaranthe, this album offers crisp, modern sounding power metal, which, while firmly anchored in European power metal, also draws on Gothenburg melodeath and melodic metalcore. This may sound like something that could be a disastrous load of commercial bullshit, but I must admit that I think that this album is pretty good.

Those who like uplifting and catchy Euro-power metal can look forward to melodic and catchy choruses galore, while the influences from Gothenburg metal and melodic metalcore provides a backdrop of groovy riffage and characteristically heavy sounding Gothenburg guitars - and there are even a couple of metalcore breakdowns, too, if your into that sort of thing. Amaranthe are stylistically akin to bands like Evergrey and Raintime but, in my opinion, superior to the both of them.

With no less then three vocalists - Jake E. Berg (clean male vocals), Eliza Ryd (clean female vocals), and Andy Solveström (screams and growls) - there is plenty of opportunity to explore many forms of vocal expression. I was positively surprised by Eliza Ryd's vocals - very often when power metal bands have female vocalists, their main contribution is typically a soft or polished style of singing, but Eliza Ryd can really belt out some powerful vocals. She has a very powerful voice which suits the energetic and uplifting power metal music on this album (she can do soft and pretty soft, too, as in the ballad "Amaranthine"), and the three vocalists really add some oompf to the choruses.

One of my few reservations is that the use of electronics and keyboards bring some sections of the songs on this album dangerously close, sonically, to modern Euro-dance pop music, which is one of the few styles of music that I hate with passion.

In all, this album was a positive surprise to me, and it is recommended to fans of modern European power metal.

(review originally posted on

Members reviews

Outstanding Pop-Metal with a Fatal Flaw

Take some ABBA and some Ace of Base. Put it through the metal filter. Mix in some electronica. Add a good dose of Heart. What do you get? Amaranthe's debut album. And it works – surprisingly well.

The eponymous debut album from Scandanavian band Amaranthe is an energetic, melodious foray into a distinct musical territory--that of pop-metal.

The music is highly accessible with sing-along melodies, yet is just complex enough to hold interest over repeated listenings.

Far and away the strongest element in music is the voice of Elize Ryd, who is making a big splash in the world of metal. At once soft and powerful, her emotive vocals transform the songs from unremarkable to thoroughly enjoyable. Her harmonies blend flawlessly with those of her counterpart Jake E.

The unfortunate foil to Ryd's voice is the gutteral grunting of Andreas Solveström. In my opinion, his noise tragically detracts from what is otherwise a very solid album. He even figures prominently in the power ballad Amaranthine--a gorgeous piece that's utterly demolished by his intrusion during the bridge.

Without the grunting, this album deserves at least 4.5 out of 5 stars. As it stands, however, it gets only 3.

Ratings only

  • TheHeavyMetalCat
  • Psydye
  • DippoMagoo
  • diamondblack
  • Gallifrey
  • eduardo.alvm
  • progpostman
  • 666sharon666
  • aecht

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