Released: April 9, 2013 on Freeside Records
I seem to be inexplicably drawn to bands from Sweden lately, even when they’re not shamelessly aping the 80’s Sunset Strip sound that once made Motley Crue a household name. Defueld approach things from a more modern perspective, sounding very much like an American Band raised on a hodge-podge of 80’s and 90’s rock and pop acts but ultimately spitting out somewhat generic “rock”. The basis of their sound is most definitely crunching guitars, while vocalist Christoffer Wetterström sings with enough gravel to give things edge while remaining coherent and safe. He reminds me of no one in particular, which in this case isn’t the greatest of compliments, as it represents a lack of any real distinction as opposed to being unique. Which is, I guess, what I could say about the entire band and album itself. They play a somewhat pedestrian radio rock for the new millennium, easily being slotted alongside a Breaking Benjamin or Five Finger Death Punch without necessarily sounding like either. Keyboards get mixed in to the proceedings courtesy of Fredrik Hedberg and most of the time it’s for splashes of color (only jumping out for focus on “Dose Of Reality”), sometimes reminding me of Depeche Mode in the most distant of ways.
After a couple of passes I didn’t find the songs sticking to me, another example of the overwhelming sense of “meh” that the record instills in me. The energy comes and goes but they never really take bridles off, only amping it up so Wetterström can get a little shouty. In the post-grunge world of metal there is an ocean of bands swimming through riffs and restrained angst to pump out this type of music, and Defueld, while not necessarily drowning, don’t do anything on Rorschach to command the attention of the listeners currently standing on shore.
ALBUM RATING: 4.
3) Something Better
4) Other Side Of Nothing
6) Glorious Dream
8) Dose Of Reality
Christoffer Wetterstrom (V,G), Alex Anfalk (G), Emil Bygde (B), Fredrik Hedberg (K), Johannes Ohlsson (D)