Chimaira - Crown of Phantoms

Chimaira Crown of Phantoms cover
Crown of Phantoms
Long Branch Records
Although they have been in the scene for almost 15 years, Chimaira have gained much more popularity and success than they should have and deserve. Some bands are fortunate enough to have the “apt luck” in the “apt time” and the “apt label & media support” of course! What we have on “Crown of Phantoms” is a completely “new line-up” as Mark Hunter is the only one left from the original one. Going all the way with 5 new guys ain’t easy at all. I do not know if this line-up will be together for a long time but I do think that Chimaira are facing several issues in their career right now.
They have combined elements from all their previous works and that means you can hear nu-metal, groove metal, metalcore, death metal (at times) and heavy metal. The brutality exists throughout the album and Mark does exhale a pissed-off, scream-brutal thing every time he opens his mouth. The production is indeed heavy but quite raw, not as polished as their older ones.
The major downside of this album is the bland songwriting and the shortage of variety. In other words, you get the same thing for about 45 minutes, and that ends up being very monotonous & boring in the long run. The groovy riffs, that were the band’s trademark, are almost absent and the whole album dangerously lacks ideas. Probably the end has come and they haven’t grasped it yet?! Who knows? If they keep it that way, then all these “paid media” will stop being praiseful to them in due course, cuz how much can you support something when its value keeps falling? I was expecting something at least decent but all I get is brutality for the sake of brutality, all inside a hollow & bland package…