Every once in a while a band will explode on to the scene. These hits can sometimes be so unexpected that it feels impossible. This happens because a lot of the time bands start slow and people can sometimes back the wrong horse. Follow the Cipher are a Swedish Metal band and their debut album, which is a self-titled album, hit us May 11th. Already the album has gained a lot of attention in Metal circles, as the album has been backed by Nuclear Blast with two music videos and two lyric music videos for good measure. All are part of this release.
Follow the Cipher have a well collected sound from various backgrounds. A Melodic form of Metal at its core, it feels industrial with stabs of Synth and an important hard Gothic Metal featuring moments of Djent to add extra umph to the atmospheric music. Fronted by female vocalist Linda Toni Grahn and being the brainchild of Guitarist Ken Kängström, Imbued with a kinetic energy throughout the album that match bands like Rave the Reqviem and The Algorithm it is remarkable how consistent they can keep their sound together whilst melding different influences projecting a momentum through the album.
Songs like ‘Valkyria’ ‘The Rising’ and ‘Starlight’ just don’t relent and offer the hardest hitters on the album. Whilst ‘Winterfall’ and ‘Titan’s Call’ aren’t afraid to show the bands slower melodic presences can match their fastest and powerful songs. Their meld of different Metal styles allows them to have brief moments of chanting (in the aforementioned ‘Titan’s Call’), piano solos (in ‘Play with Fire’) and the more aggressive death grunts and djent guitar riffs of ‘Starlight’ or ‘A Mind’s Escape’.
The album is very ambitious and runs the line of powerful and melodic close to the epic and cheesy in a way that may well deter some listeners. The album also showcases a cover of Sabaton’s ‘Carolus Rex’ which takes the elements of Sabaton’s hit so well into their own stride. They somehow manage a distinctly more powerful blend, whilst making it their own without taking over the original. But make no mistake that this isn’t the focal point of the album. There are plenty of songs that make for an impressive hit.
Follow the Cipher are quick to make their mark and will likely enter many regular Metal circles very easily. Each song is powerful, exciting and varied in a memorable and catchy sense. This amount of effort will not be easily dismissed but they, none the less, favour to push gleefully into the boundaries of an epic and cheesy sounding delivery. This will both make and break the band for some people, whilst their kinetic power will drive the point home for most.