Genre: industrial metalcore
The latest release by Swedish metal act Engel, "Blood of Saints" builds on the sound of the previous album "Threnody". Thus, the listener is treated to modern metalcore-based music in the form of 11 rocking tracks. The electronic aspect of Engel's sound strikes me as being more dominant on this album than on "Threnody".
The opener 'Question Your Place' is a pretty formulaic modern metalcore song (at least to my ears), featuring your typical heavy groove-based verse and melodic chorus. This track was a bit of a turn-off to me, but it is followed by two incredibly strong melodic tracks.
'Frontline' is more of an all out hard rocking metal track with, if not outright elements, then at least the drive of traditional metal and also features some nice melodic guitar leads. Similarly "Feel Afraid" features melodic elements that could be associated with traditional metal (but wrapped in a modern industrial metal sound). 'Numb' takes us back in metalcore-land, while 'Cash King' is an uptempo rocker with a very catchy melodic chorus. The album is characterized by this going back and forth between metalcore and more rock/metal inspired tracks. All wrapped in electronic effects and very melodic vocals.
I think that a lot of people will dislike this album for being melodic and following the formulas of commercial melodic metalcore. But, then again, Engel are good at using these formulas to churn out some solid songs that are catchy and memorable. The more metalcore-oriented tracks do not really appeal that much to me, but I do like the uptempo rock/metal-oriented tracks - especially the ones mentioned above.
Hardcore metal elitists should probably stay as far away from this album as possible, but if you like melodic metalcore with commercial appeal, then Engel's "Blood of Saints" is among the better releases within the genre, as it retains the spirit of rock.