Review by Adam M on November 8, 2016.
Dark Tranquillity has found a nice balance with Atoma. The harsher segments are countered with a number of nice clean singing ones that recall the album Projector. The mixture of different eras from the band into one is very promising.
The use of the different singing styles really helps give the album versatility, which is something the band needs at this point of their career. The music is still hard-hitting melodic death metal of the highest order. There is a nice balance between brutality and melody, with a emphasis on the latter. The songs occupy a similar space to what Omnium Gatherum has been floating around with recently which is good because I like this album a little more than the recent Omnium Gatherum release. It simply has enough variety and impact to come through as a solid release. Still, I think more progressive tendencies could have been incorporated to make this into a huge beast of an album. As it stands, it’s a solid piece of work that has nods to the different time periods of the band. It has enough moody moments to enthrall on a higher plane of existence. These atmospheres are dark, but not entirely negative in nature. There is a feel good element to the album as well that is something to behold. One does get an uplifting effect to the music even if it has a somewhat dark palette overall. This is because of the mixture of atmosphere and harmony to be found within these tracks.
The music comes together with balance and finesse. The tracks are all strong and it is difficult to find a standout track. Likewise, the musical performances are of the highest quality and lend to the tightness of the album. Atoma is a splendid work of melodic death metal and another one to add to the strong selection the genre has had this year.
Rating: 8 out of 10