Arch Enemy
Khaos Legions
Style: Melodic Death Metal
Release date: 30 May, 2011
Playing time: 54:49

The merging of melody and aggression works so well in Arch Enemy. Death metal in general is aggressive, but Arch Enemy seem to have a unique sound all of their own within the genre. A lot of their trademark sound has to do with the melodic guitar harmonizing from brothers Michael and Christopher Amott, combined with the distinctive growl from vocalist Angela Gossow.

Arch Enemy’s eighth studio release, Khaos Legions, their first in four years, has everything you'd expect from the band. Throughout their existence, they have never faked it, which is why this album will surpass even previous releases. The fourteen tracks (three of which are instrumentals) are all exceptional melodic death metal songs.

The brothers Amott really rip on this one. Their trademark twin shredding really shines on Khaos Legions. Gossow’s natural growl is still a distinct part of AE’s sound. There’s no harmonizers or effects on her vocals. Her mix of low- and high-pitched growls gives the effect of a multi-layered choir of growls.

Instrumental intro "Khaos Overture" is the calm before the storm. Its twin guitar lead arpeggio picking over sampled sirens and voices sets up the chaos that will soon commence. On "Yesterday is Dead and Gone," Angela sounds commanding as always, while Michael and Christopher’s melodic lead patterns make it a definitive AE song.

Over the course of 14 tracks, the band doesn’t let up. Every song is a standout; full of sweeping twin guitar leads, chugging riffs, a galloping rhythm section and those rapturous raspy vocals of Ms. Gossow. It’s aggressive-yet-melodic, and it’s all over the place musically, but in a good way.

I really think fans of Arch Enemy will be mighty pleased with this effort.


01. Khaos Overture (Intro)
02. Yesterday Is Dead and Gone
03. Bloodstained Cross
04. Under Black Flags We March
05. No Gods, No Masters
06. City of the Dead
07. Through the Eyes of a Raven
08. Cruelty without Beauty
09. We are a Godless Entity (Instrumental)
10. Cult of Chaos
11. Thorns In My Flesh
12. Turn to Dust (Instrumental)
13. Vengeance is Mine
14. Secrets

Label: Century Media
Distribution: EMI (Denmark)
Reviewed by: Kelley Simms
Date: 7 May, 2011