IN SANITY – Welcome To The Show
- by ER
- Posted on 24-03-2020
Back in a day, when In Flames had started distancing itself from melodic death metal, countless bands were emulating their older, core sound. Few, if any, would rather take on their latter material, particularly "Reroute To Remain/Sountrack To Your Escape", but that is exactly where the German melodic death/power metallers stand, with a nod to Soilwork’s "Natural Born Chaos", but, despite being competent musicians, they have none of the songwriting skills of either influence.
Formed in 2011, in Paderborn, North Rhine-Westphalia, the band released two albums: "Gates Of Insanity" (2014) and "Ocean Of Black" (2016), before the rather generically titled "Welcome To The Show". The band consists of Erik Sollmann (Vocals), John Turner (Guitar, B-vocals), Tim Lobner (Guitar), Nino Carovac (Guitar,B-vocals), Andrey Astafiev (Bass), and Sophia Voss (Drums) and plays, as hinted at before a mix of 2002/2004 In Flames and 2002 Soilwork with considerable power metal influence a’la early Children Of Bodom. As is often the case with pretentious or genetic titles, they become predictive of the flat uninspired content and "Welcome To The Show" is no exception.
There are literally two good tracks on this album, the opening "Stendal Sundrome" and "The New World Order", but even they reveal the astonishing inability of In Sanity to write memorable and compelling material. Maybe this has something to do with Erik Sollmann trying very hard to sound exactly like In Flames’ Anders Fridén or John Turner’s clean vocals mimicking Soilwork’s Björn Ove Ingemar "Speed" Strid, or, could it be the flat, plastic, "electronic" production? When the tracks are at their worst, we mimic "Hey! Hey!" from "Heart-Shaped Box" Nirvana in the chorus (High Rise) surrounded by pseudothrash riffs, or we "borrow" Nevermore’s "Narcosynthesis" verse riff (Damaged Gods) or Death’s Charles Michael Schuldiner’s solo stylings and Testament riffs (Hellward Bound) to no interesting ends. The overall impression is that songs are loaded with boring verses with the aim to get to the "big" "epic" choruses as soon as possible. All of this comes down to a total mess saved only by the members’ evident instrumental skills.
In Sanity should reconsider their approach and refocus their efforts. They seem to be one of these bands who could really use an impartial resident critic who would influence their self-editing and compositional choices. Until this happens, I seriously don’t foresee much future for them.