Maybe not hypnotic but still powerful
Re-Armed are one of those bands that have been around for quite some time but you’ve probably never really heard of. In this day and age with the sheer volume of bands coming at us from every angle, that shouldn’t be too surprising. These Finns have been working at their Gothenburg influenced craft since 2001 and, like many bands trying to get their name out there, it’s of no surprise to see that their discography comprises of at least a half dozen demos and promos. Finally, 11 years after their conception, Re-Armed have unleashed their debut long player, dubbed Worldwide Hypnotize, which features seven new tracks alongside reworked versions of two others.
It sounds clichéd but what Re-Armed do isn’t overly original but, to their credit, they do it reasonably well. Re-Armed’s style can be best described as a mix of thrash, groove, and melodic death metal. Throw in parts of The Crown, Illdisposed and perhaps even In Flames and Dark Tranquillity and you will get a basic idea of what this quintet from Kerava, Finland are all about. One could even consider Re-Armed to have faint traces of Gorefest in these nine tracks as well at times.
The one thing that is common across each of the songs on here is variation. No one song becomes repetitive nor does any one song slip into the dangerous territory of sounding like another song on the album. Each track, from the blistering opening cut Natural Backlash, to the super groovy Hoax, and the thrashing finale, Trance, Worldwide Hypnotize certainly offers up plenty of variety within for the listener. It’s worthy to note this as plenty of bands fall into this trap very easily. Re-Armed, however, have kept clear and kept things interesting and diverse which only works to their advantage.
This, of course, is aided by the tight execution of the group. The twin guitar attack of Tommi Helkalahti and Markus Salo delivers with blinding accuracy across mosh pit inducing riffs and tasteful harmonies and leads all while bassist Kärtsy Hatakka and drummer Mart Mardisalu unleash a militant like rhythm section that compliments well. The gravelly bark of vocalist Jouni Matilainen can only be described as a mix of Bo Summer (Illdisposed), Jeff Walker (Carcass), and Mikael Stanne (Dark Tranquillity). No one influence is stronger than the other, but I can certainly see elements of all of those front-men in Matilainen’s performance.
If thrashing melo-death metal with groove is your thing, then Re-Armed should be in high rotation in your playlist. For everyone else, what Re-Armed have finally put together after a decade long slog is a solid release that should certainly get their name out there and it’s one that shows a lot of promise as well.