Zonaria
Infamy and the Breed

After a measure of success with their entries into the melodic death metal genre, (Sonic Syndicate who then signed with Nuclear Blast and the well received Blinded Colony), you could forgive Pivotal for releasing yet another polished, competent but formulaic Swedish melodic death metal album.

Zonaria aren’t bad, they just aren’t quite as good as either Sonic Syndicate or Blinded Colony though all the interchangeable elements are present in spades. Granted, this act is incredibly young (the band is mostly in their late teens), so some lack of experience issues are to be expected, and honestly for their youth this offering is perfectly acceptable, but as far as the album’s standing in the genre, its going to get lost on the Melodic death metal mire.

Everything is as you’d expect; heavy tight production, sci fi sounding synths mid range raspy vocals, and mix of energetic galloping tracks (i.e. “The Last Endeavor”) and the occasional slower or (i.e. “Image of Myself”) experimental number and even some guest clean vocals from Scar Symmetry’s Christian Älvestam (“The Armageddon Anthem” and “Attending Annihilation”). To be honest, I hear a lot of mid era Hypocrisy here (Abducted, The Final Chapter, Hypocrisy), so depending on how you view that era of Hypocrisy’s discography might determine how you like this album. I personally thought those few albums were incredibly boring, and thus my response to this solid but far from memorable album is similar.

To their credit, Zonaria try hard, and appear to be on the right track at their young age, so I’m not going to count them out yet, but a glossy big time production and synth backed riffs, do not a great album make. The riffs are relatively up tempo and polished but lack that certain factor that makes them stick or elevate the album past merely ‘OK”. Still, if you absolutely must purchase a cookie cutter, but energetic melodic death metal album in the next few days, youd could do worse than Infamy and the Breed.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
October 9th, 2007

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