Have you ever wondered what it would sound like if you stuck Breaking Benjamin, Machine Head, Chimera, and Phil Anselmo into a blender, and then made an album out of the results? Well, it would probably sound something like The Longed-For Reckoning, the latest release by Fall of Carthage.
Thrashy, groove-oriented riffs dominate The Longed-For Reckoning, which doesn’t quite fit neatly into any particular category, though groove metal seems to be the closest candidate. With vocals that range from angered screaming that channel Phil Anselmo and Max Cavalera simultaneously, to yarling (think post-grunge Shinedown/Seether type singing vocals), vocalist Sascha proves himself to be pretty comfortable in front of the microphone. There various electronic elements added to the tracks, giving them a modern twist, occasionally even giving the music a rhythmic, rap-influenced tone (check out the track “Whodini Peckawood” to hear what I’m talking about). “For The Soul To Save,” in particular, is a pretty all-encompassing track, with a little bit of everything you can hear on the album, packed into one song.
The production on The Longed-For Reckoning is major-label quality, with a super clean, sleek sound that emphasizes the vocals and the guitars. Fall of Carthage are good at what they do, but this album would benefit from just a little bit more focus, and maybe three or four less tracks. The mixture of thrash, groove, and hip hop isn’t bad, but there seems to be a feeling of wanting to not stick to one particular genre, so the album winds up sounding somewhat diluted. While I admire a band that wants to stretch out of their comfort zone, sometimes playing it a little safe is the best bet. I also feel that this album sounds like it’s about 10-15 years late to the party, particularly when trying to mix rap and metal (more in the way Korn did it, than Limp Bizkit). Had this come out in 2002, Fall of Carthage would have absolutely been kings of the scene. Still, there’s an honesty in their tone, and the riffs are pretty damn killer most of the time, so I can’t complain too much. If you like Five Finger Death Punch, The Cavalera Conspiracy, or Machine Head, give The Longed-For Reckoning a spin.