An integral cog in the Melodic Death Metal train that steamed through heavy music, the influential Soilwork have reached their eleventh studio album with Verkligheten and whilst their sound across it doesn't inspire anything particularly new or challenging it will present some moments of entertainment for their more hardcore followers. After the intro track plays through and you're hit with Arrival, you're immediately locked in and engaged as to what to expect for the rest of its duration. Soaring buoyancy is the name of the game and as ever Soilwork relish in towing that line.
There are moments where the band changes up the pace a little - but some of the gruffer, slower tracks like Bleeder Despoiler are where this record falls down. You'll be left sitting there thinking it sounds familiar and that's because about 34234238789 other bands have churned out exactly the same kind of stuff in recent years. When Strid is going for it and belting out the more 'epic' sounding numbers those are the shining points but on the whole as a full piece of work this record is excruciatingly average. It's disappointing that at this point in their career Soilwork aren't in a place where they're keen on adding elements to their sound which sits outside of their 'norm' but it's probably important to note that they've got their formula set out and it's hardly damaged their ability to build a loyal following over the years.
Overall then, there are definitely some entertaining bursts that shine through but on the whole this is just a very standard, at times hopelessly boring, record which will come and go in a flash.