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Opponent – ‘Sentinel’

Solid State Records
Soilwork, At the Gates, Metallica, Pantera, Killswitch Engage, In Flames, The Unguided
Release Date
July 8, 2022
Solid State Records
Melodic Groove/Heavy Metal/Metalcore

                Mention music and Seattle to someone in the same sentence and their mind will automatically wander to the plaid flannel wearing, self-loathing music of the late 80’s and early 90’s as it swept across the world in a tidal wave of anxiety. However, Seattle has always been a musical Mecca and one of the latest bands to spring forth from there in the last few years are Opponent who are back with their sophomore album ‘Sentinel’.

                Just like their debut album ‘Illusions’ from 2020, with ‘Sentinel’ Opponent hit the listener like a primal concrete slab of melodic groove metal. However, this isn’t delivered in the style of a bunch of kids who have heard Pantera and want to stomp about like Phil Anselmo or Dimebag; this is an album which takes that 90’s groove metal sound and transports it very much to the 21st century as pummelling riff after riff batter the listener into submission through an unstoppable wall which also carries an element of metalcore. Furthermore, instead of the angst-ridden lyrics that a lot of melodic groove metal go for this, Opponent differ by looking introspectively, feeling the raw emotion from recent personal experiences from vocalist and guitarist Andy Maier where tracks such as ‘Fading’, ‘Shadows’ and ‘Reflection’ bring about all the appeal of recent releases by Soilwork and At the Gates, whilst nodding towards Killswitch Engage with enough Metallica and Pantera to bring in a real mass appeal.

                 ‘Sentinel’ is the sound of a band going places; they have the guts and hey have their guile and if you are a fan of melodic groove with modern metalcore infusions, then this album is definitely something that will put a tingle in your dingle.

"‘Sentinel’ is the sound of a band going places"

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