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Sentenced - Down

1996 Century Media Records :: Reviewed by rofreason on 2005-07-08

Listening to Down, many references to Metallica come to mind. Both bands have vocalists that sound like James Hetfield, and both have progressed amazingly since their breakthrough releases. Fortunately for us metalheads, Sentenced still keep their heart in the music, fusing a commercial feel with values straight from the underground. Everything about this album is polished, from the gold leaf cover to the Woodhouse Studios Production, showing the time and dedication these guys have. The new vocalist does have Hetfielditus, but he complements the music so well, allowing each track to swell to immense proportions. Master songwriters, the whole album just flows, and is actually quite an emotional piece of work. Lyrically, every track deals with despair, and suicide, sort of a concept record, as the entire process of someone ready to end their life is recorded (you can hear the "click" at the beginning and the gunshot at the end of the record) with the ending track closing their life. Not as depressing as it could have been though, as the songs work more to elevate than anything else. A truly monumental piece of work, Down is a master achievement by one of the premiere hard rock bands out there today. You can't go wrong with this, highly recommended.