CHAIN COLLECTOR – The Masquerade

CHAIN COLLECTOR - The Masquerade


Release date: November 18, 2005

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Chain Collector is a new band, as far as the name is concerned, since the musicians have been around for quite some time. Indeed, Kjetil Nordhus and Anders Kobro are two names very well known to any fan of the Scandinavian Black Metal scene, due to the fact that the two musicians had been together in Green Carnation and In the Woods. Kobro had also spent some time with the Black Metal band Carpathian Forest, along with Chain Collector’s guitarist Goran Bomann.

Although there is a rich Black Metal background, this Norwegian band plays Melodic Death Metal, also well known as the Gothenburg sound. Chain Collector’s debut release was in the form of a 4 song Demo entitled Forthcoming Addiction, and it made quite an impression, convincing Massacre Records to offer them a record contract.

Masquerade has a flawless sound production, as it was recorded at DUB Studios and mastered at The Cutting Room Studios in Sweden, used by In Flames and Rammstein. There is absolutely nothing new within the album as far as the music is concerned. The 10 songs can be characterized as Classic Melodic Death Metal with clean and screaming vocals, with a twist of Metalcore. The guitars have strong influences from Dark Tranquility’s sound and performing style, while the song structure follows the successful In Flames pattern. This is kind of a curse that falls onto every band that plays in this Metal genre — to be compared with the bands that are the pioneers in this scene. So, no one should misunderstand the term “strong influences” as a copycat situation.

The album opens with the catchy riff of “Hierarchy of Murder” that could warm up every “numb” audience in a live performance. The melody enters during the chorus lines, along with some clean vocals that add something in terms of music diversity. “Harvester” features some impressive and compact drum work, especially during the up-tempo segments of the song, that fits perfectly with the At The Gates riffing style. “Neverwhere” is one of the best tracks on the album, with a ton-heavy rhythm section that, to some degree, brings to mind the extremely low tuned guitars in Metallica’s latest musical contribution, St. Anger.

Next, “And Then There Was None” features a Metalcore addition, especially in the vocals side, then there is the 6-minute song entitled “Crucifixion.” The clean guitar intro and the choir female vocals create a dark atmosphere that is even more enhanced with some electronic sounds. The album would be better if only there were tracks like the this one. After the previous short tempo break, “Project Savior” marks the return of high velocities, with very good lead and rhythm guitar work. This tempo pattern continues with the neck-snapping “Tapping the Vein,” the melodic “Fallen Angel,” and the solid “Wicked Mask.” “Winter Princess” closes the album, with another fine example of what the band can achieve when they blend atmosphere and the mainstream Melodic Death sound.

Every fan of the Metal scene from Sweden should acquire The Masquerade without any doubts. Others should still check out the band and keep your ears opens for future releases, because the composing potential and the musical experience of these guys is there, waiting to be fully deployed.


  • Dr. Dimitris Kontogeorgakos

    Dimitris was a reviewer and interviewer here at Metal Express Radio. He has a diploma in Physics, a Masters in Medical Physics and a doctorate dimploma in Nuclear Medicine (this is the reason for his Dr. title). He was given his first Heavy Metal tape at the age of 12 which was a compilation entitled Scandinavian Metal Attack. The music immediately drew his attention and there he was listening to the first Iron Maiden album, trying to memorize the names of the band members. That was it! After some years, he stopped recording tapes and started buying vinyl records, spending every penny in the local record shop. The first live concert he attended was Rage co-headlining with Running Wild.

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