One Word Review: Dew
Decipher was After Forever's sophomore album and it is clear that they have improved in every way since the debut. The songwriting is sharper, resulting several memorable songs. Emphasis is on heavy riffs and tight musicianship and the various passages of songs fit together in a more convincing way.
The music has evolved in a slightly heavier direction since the debut but there is still room for slower passages where the beauty core of After Forever shines. Floor Jansen's voice is still stunning. Compared to the debut she sings with a stronger voice, showing more confidence and more control. A song like Thy Pledge of Allegiance #1 shows how the interaction between Floor Jansen (soprano) and Sander Gommans (growls) has improved as well. On the other hand, Thy Pledge of Allegiance #2 shows that the band has still to perfect the balance. Monolith of doubt is another example where the vocal interaction between the two really works as Sander's voice roams in the background as an ominous sign of warning. Mark Jansen's screams still don't do anything good for my overall impression.
Things like the duet on Imperfect Tenses, the heaviness of Emphasis, the chorus melody of Intrinsic and the atmosphere created by Sander's voice in Monolith of Doubt are standout moments for me.
Decipher shows the band stepping out of the shadows of any of their influences and creating their own identity. Atmospheric, melancholic, symphonic, heavy. Great stuff.
Favorite Songs: Emphasis, Intrinsic, Thy Pledge of Allegiance #1, Imperfect Tenses, Monolith of Doubt.
Written By Steen
Online: Wednesday, February 3, 2016