Rating:
8.5
Amon Amarth - Versus The World
18 November 2002


Disc I
01. Death In Fire
02. For The Stabwounds In Our Backs
03. Where Silent Gods Stand Guard
04. Versus The World
05. Across The Rainbow Bridge
06. Down The Slopes Of Death
07. Thousand Years Of Oppression
08. Bloodshed
09. ...And Soon The World Will Cease To Be

Disc II [Viking Edition Bonus]
01. Siegreicher Marsch
02. Sorrow Throughout The Nine Worlds
03. The Arrival Of The Fimbul Winter
04. Burning Creation
05. The Mighty Doors Of The Speargod's Hall
06. Under The Greyclouded Winter Sky
07. Burning Creation
08. Arrival Of The Fimbul Winter [demo]
09. Without Fear
10. Risen From The Sea
11. Atrocious Humanity
12. Army Of Darkness
13. Thor Arise
14. Sabbath Bloody Sabbath [Black Sabbath cover]

Disc III [Strictly Limited "Pop-up" Edition Re-issue]
[Live at Bloodshed Over Bochum, 31.12.2008]
01. Death In Fire
02. For The Stabwounds In Our Backs
03. Where The Silent Gods Stand Guard
04. Versus The World
05. Across The Rainbow Bridge
06. Down The Slopes Of Death
07. Thousand Years Of Oppression
08. Bloodshed
09. ...And Soon The World Will Cease To Be


Sweden, birthplace of so many excellent Death Metal bands, especially Melodic Death, once again displays a major combo with Amon Amarth. I have to say that I was totally oblivious to the sole existence of that band before having a chance to discover this album. But as if the band was aware of this, they generously included a bonus disc with "Versus The World", which contains a best of their previous albums, and that album alone is praiseworthy. But let's not diverge from our major topic now, namely "Versus The World". The band has been around for quite some time now but this album is their huge breakthrough.

In a renewal of the Melodic Death sound alongside bands such as Darkane and In Flames, Amon Amarth plays what we could fancily call Brutal Melodic Death Metal. It may sound dense but it's what came to my mind from the first listen and the concept is not that stupid. Let's say Melodic Death with a convinced riff brutality, if you prefer. The drumming is absolutely remarkable, the recurrent use of bass drums is delicious.

From the spirited "Death In Fire' to the optimistic '…And Soon The World Would Cease To Be', this record presents very interesting musical elements with a different view. I'm almost tempted to state that it's refreshing. These guys know how to blast and they do it well. It came to my knowledge as a total surprise and never vanished of my mind since, a sign of utmost quality. The diversity displayed in the album is definitely a great plus as 'Across The Rainbow Bridge' doesn't sound like any other song, and it's pretty much true for each track on the CD, although there are a few exceptions.

The production is huge, the packaging absolutely gorgeous and even more important their music stays crafted in one's mind over the listens. No one can stay icy cold while hearing 'Death In Fire' and that's the force of Amon Amarth: melting the opposition with [musical] strength. Now, on the downside, as Deadsoulman pointed out in his own review, the lyrics are somewhat bringing shame to the whole thing. Northern Gods, Odin and the likes, going to battle… Not really Shakespearean if you know what I mean.

As for the bonus disc, it contains some memorable songs despite of being recorded with a lower production. The opening track 'Siegreicher Marsch' has to be one of the most complex Melodic Death compositions ever and nonetheless so catchy. Mostly, the reminder varies from traditional Death to Black influenced Death, I guess in the early years of the band.

In my opinion, "Versus The World" has the class needed to be considered as one of the bests of 2002. The addition of a bonus disc is not to displeased the listener, and in the whole, Amon Amarth's latest effort deserves its rating even though I have the feeling that this band could do better. Unite with them against the world, I have already join their ranks.


Band profile: Amon Amarth
Album: Versus The World


 


written by Demonic Tutor | 11.08.2004



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BurbotsRevenge - 04.12.2007 at 09:24  
good review, and you said they could 'probably do better' - With Oden on Our Side is the answer i think it (Oden) takes this album in particular to a new level, good album nonehteless, one of my fav AA albums
Powerslavex - 27.11.2008 at 14:44  
Not their best but a good album
Deadmeat - 11.02.2009 at 13:45  
Great album and good review! Bloodshed kicks ass!!!
Abattoir - 11.02.2009 at 15:04  
Well I'll say straight, that With Oden On Our Side is an amazing album, but for me it doesn't beat this one. Yeap, like I said. The start with Death In Fire and For Stabwounds... is just amazing, it couldn't be better. All the other songs are also on the level, while the end with song ...And The World Will Cease To Be is perfect.
Uirapuru - 10.04.2009 at 08:16  
''...the lyrics are somewhat bringing shame to the whole thing...'' That's very true.

''I've lived a life or prosperity
But I'm not as young as I used to be
Down the road waits misery
Why cannot death just set me free!''

Some parts are just lame . But still that's a nice album, remarkably heavier than all others, but still with melodic and catchy parts that remember us what band we are listening. The three first tracks are my favorites. The production is only ok.

As for the bonus cd, the german version (i think ) of Victorious March is pretty good, some other songs looks like demo versions of the songs from the EP ''Sorrow Throughout The Nine Worlds''.. and some other really demo songs that i didnt like.

Overall, i guess the rate 7.5 would be fair for the disc1, the bonus are most for fans than anybody else.
JeffreyAgente - 17.04.2011 at 19:56  
Good review! I rated with an 9... this album is so amazing!
Down The Slopes Of Death- The best song of the album, althought it don't change much the speed, is so awesome! Listening to this song makes me think someting like this:


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