Mike Amott guitars Christopher Amott guitars John Liiva vocals Daniel Erlandsson drums In the Dictionary of Contemporary English, the definition of arch when used as a prefix is: having the qualities of the type to the highest degree.
Hence, arch enemy would be the absolute highest of all enemies. Perhaps archmusicians would have been a better description for this Swedish/British band. Their Century Media debut, Stigmata, is a missing link of sorts in today's heavy music scene, an album melding a primitive thrash sound with influences from both traditional and progressive metal.
To give you a slight idea of what you're in for before actually hearing the album, just take a look at the band s line-up. Ex-Carcass/Carnage (and current Spiritual Beggars) guitarist/songwriter Mike Amott spearheads this quartet, with his younger brother Christopher, of Armaggedon, holding the other guitar slot. Not surprisingly, the brothers Amott are an incredible team, weaving guitar progressions and harmonies in a way that is somewhat reminiscent of Michael s previous band, Carcass. Taking the role of vocalist is John Liiva, also formerly of Carnage, and Eucharist drummer Daniel Erlandsson (who has performed session work with In Flames) rounds out this explosive roster
To simply write about Arch Enemys unique style of blending classic metal with traditional thrash does the band absolutely no justice. For the truth was made clear in 1996 when the band released their Black Earth debut in Europe, which displayed their unique, melodic rhythms and progressive beats, chilling dual-guitar harmonies, and powerful vocals. Produced by Fredrik Nordstrom (At The Gates, Hammerfall), Black Earth completely shook up the metal world and left fans amazed and wanting more. Arch Enemy possess an addicting and somewhat nostalgic sound, highlighted by the amazing guitar work of the Amotts.
Having entered the studio again with producer Fredrik Nordstrom in early 1998, Arch Enemy now deliver the Stigmata masterpiece. Containing slightly more mature songwriting but with a more raw and primitive production style, Stigmata is an inviting record for fans of death, thrash, traditional and/or progressive metal. In fact, the anticipation of what lies ahead in every song holds the intensity of a carnal forge. Each musician's past projects speak for themselves, and Arch Enemy's debut is quickly becoming a hailed masterpiece. Now it is time for the entire world to be subjected to the talent and ingenuity of this amazing quartet, and Stigmata is the perfect vehicle to bring about that accomplishment.