System Divide
The Conscious Sedation
Style: Modern Metal
Release date: September 13th 2010

I have always believed that genealogy of a band could speak a lot. In reference to SYSTEM DIVIDE it is easier to mention the origin than to explain in words their music. So...


In the beginning (2008) as a project SYSTEM DIVIDE has been founded by the vocalist of death-grind rippers ABORTED (also a project of his own). Swen De Caluwe decided to enter in a lighter and experimental gender without losing the extremity. He worked with a second vocalist – Miri Milman, who left the melodic metallers from Israel DISTORTED. 


The mutual mini-tours of European and American death-grind have brought (I suppose) the other members of the band. Mikie Heller from MALIGNANCY, and Cole Martinez and Andrew Lenthe, as the last-mentioned guys have a quite non-successful project for “European influenced melodic metal” called ANTENORA.


In such a way is melted one extreme metal with pretty enough melodies. There is an effective contrast between the roaring of Sven and the melodic singing of Miri. However the female trill enters the cliché of the modern pop-metal, reminding us so many comparisons that I will slip some of them for sure. That is why I will just say that the tradition comes from Anneke from THE GATHERING. The strong death metal sprints are divided by melodic passages. The eclecticism at musical level reaches high tops.


The multilayer cooperation has convinced Metal Blade that this will be a successful band. Why not to be released melody with female voice with brutal extremism? Is not it nice in the light of the fact that in Europe we are rather more brutal in metal?! The production is pumped up by the biggest names in the mixing, video-making and artwork-creating.


The sharp mix of the genders leaves the impression that the band members rarely meet together and the composing mainly load the internet traffic. The other effect is that this structure immediately has entered somewhat cliché and the songs are similar one to another. Even the melodies do not change the lack of identity in the tracks. The album reminds the absurd mix of metal and pop songs. But here are melted EVANESCENCE, DISTURBED and ABORTED.


The exceptionally strong idea of the front cover does not correspond to the title of the album. The artwork performance itself is typical photo-shopped realism which disparages the idea to more “work” and less “art”. The logo is modern and soothe for parents. Yes, it is a consumers’ product targeting the American teenagers who believe that they listen to brutal music which cannot shock the society. In reference to this product reminds of THIS OR THE APOCALYPSE. That is why on the American market the CD is for sale on a middle-of-the-road price. And if in the US this investment gives fruits at a later stage here in Europe where we are indeed brutal, I doubt that this mechanism will work. With the second listening of “The Conscious Sedation” you will get bored for sure.


01. Vagaries Of Perception

02. An Intoxicating Affair

03. Echoes

04. The Apex Doctrine

05. Lethargy

06. (N)ether

07. Hollow

08. Purity In Imperfection

09. Repentiforget

10. The Conscious Sedation

11. Stagnant Progression

Label: Metal Blade
Distribution: Target (Denmark)
Artwork rating: 70/100
Reviewed by: Maria D. S.
Date: September 10th 2010