By DJ Carrion
After a two year hiatus and the departure of Chris Peterson (who’s now finishing a new Decree album), Rhys Fulber returns to fill in and helps Bill Leeb deliver the 14th Front Line Assembly album, Civilization. The first single off the album, “Maniacal,” gave fans a return to an older and aggressive Front Line Assembly, while keeping things current-sounding and not recycled. The single served as a worthy appetizer.
The massive success of Delerium over the past few years has been slowly seeping into Front Line Assembly, and on “Fragmented,” the trademark Delerium sound presents itself with Bill softly singing over it. Vocalist Leah Randi does background vocals/chanting here and on the next track, “Vanished,” a song too dark to be on a Delerium release.
They then become “Strategic” and increase the tempo to lead you into the core of the title track. The group utilize everything they have and put it into this track. A bass and distant, crunchy guitar stir beneath a slow techno beat until about three minutes in when Leeb’s vocals kick in, building the song up until the chorus hits and everything comes into play. You can really hear Fulber’s input on this album. It doesn’t sound anything like the past few releases (which he wasn’t on), it just sounds like a well-structured rock song. The final track, “Schicksal,” is the closest thing to an old school-sounding FLA song, but the twist is that it’s sung in German.
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