Without the prior reference of Darkane back catalog, the inclusion of vocals from Jens Broman, singer for such Swedish minor leaguers Construcdead and The Defaced, could in all likelihood be missed. In fact, it being a few years since I last put on Layers Of Lies, the band’s 2005 release featuring longtime singer Andreas Sydow, I barely noticed a difference.

Well, there is one. Objectively, Broman’s approach is better suited to this material, and even if his vocal style is hardly standout for the technical metal course, it actually helps Darkane sound more their own.

That said, there’s no denying that Demonic Art suffers from its own ambitions, among which are sounding more like Strapping Young Lad. In fact, the initial interest I had in songs like “Impetuous Constant Chaos” and “Leaving Existence” faded once I realized I actually just wanted to turn on Alien.

Even the best cut on the record, the title track, with an exceptionally hooky chorus (one thing Darkane have always excelled at), starts to falter and lose the listener’s interest by the bridge, and after the record is over, the layered harmonies from Broman might linger, but if you were quizzed about it on Name That Metal Tune (coming soon), you’d have a hard time saying “Darkane.”

In A Word: Average

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