Newly released on the Century Media label is the eighth full length studio album from German Metalcore band, Caliban, which explores a number of lyrical themes in an occasionally uncompromising style.
'We Are The Many' kicks the album off in fine style with its driving riff and what sounds like pseudo-keyboards (a guitar-synth or actual keyboards, I'm not too sure) in the background making an interesting combination before the screaming vocals of Dörner kick in. The use of Dörner's screamed vocals as opposed to the cleaner sung vocals from rhythm guitarist Denis Schmidt is interesting combination that is used extensively throughout the album to great effect.
The second track deal with creatures from the night (something that everyone can relate to surely) with the song 'The Bogeyman', which has another solid riff played out and Dörner's vocals are especially effective when he lowers his tone slightly on the phrase "the bogeyman".
Third track 'Memorial' is a song about the (sometimes) fractious relationship and ultimate loss of a father. Amongst this outpouring of regret is one of the tunefully sung chorus from Schmidt which works very well on this track in particular. Some rapid machine-gun-like drumming from Grün opens up 'No Tomorrow' which soon settles into a mid-tempo number, complete with a somewhat shouty chorus from the rest of the band.
'Edge Of Black' is a song which deals with man's exploitation of the earth's oil resources and is another solid track which is followed by 'Davy Jones' which has a lead vocal from Schmidt for a change. Although this is one of the lighter tracks on the album, it's still heavy enough not to look out of place.
'Deadly Dream' brings the pace of the album back up with another heavy riff featuring another solo vocal from Schmidt before 'Open Letter' takes over with Grün showing his prowess at double-bass drumming underneath a chorus that could easily be adapted in the live show for a bit of audience participation.
'Dein R3.ich' tackles the subject of fascism, and also has some excellent keyboard work from guest musician Marcel Neumann along with a lyric which is sung mostly in German. Even though I personally don't speak much German, this certainly doesn't detract from the song itself (although a German to English translation in the lyric sheet could be useful!).
'Broadcast To Damnation' tackles the subject of the media's manipulation of the public and it pulls no punches lyrically as it contains some of the looser English expressions!
'The Oath' starts off slowly enough with its lyrical guitar augmented by a simple drumbeat and a somewhat distant sounding vocal from Dörner. This is as close as Caliban come to a ballad - and indeed a love song - on this album. Bearing in mind the rest of the album's lyrics, this is somewhat unexpected but at the same time worth a special mention.
The regular CD ends with 'Modern Warfare', which has the band's take on how some people are disrespected via the Internet and is another fast-paced track that again pulls no punches with its lyrics.
All in all this is a great album, and with the band currently out of a European tour at the moment to support it, let's hope that they make across to the UK for some dates.
Available in a standard CD, Limited edition 2CD Box, Special Edition 2CD Digipak, Vinyl and Digital Album.
We Are The Many
Edge Of Black
Broadcast To Damnation
Andreas Dörner – Screamed Vocals
Denis Schmidt – Rhythm Guitar and Clean Vocals
Marc Görtz – Lead Guitar
Marco Schaller – Bass and Backup Vocals
Patrick Grün – Drums and Flute