Review of the Album Construct by Swedish Melodic Death Metal Band Dark Tranquillity
Construct Is More Than Just a Good Melodic Death Metal Album
Construct is the 2013 studio album by Swedish melodic death metal band Dark Tranquillity and readers that have been following along with these album reviews knew sooner or later that this is the direction that this writer was headed in. Construct is part of the word construction but the term also refers to things such as social construct. We Are the Void was a very musically mature album as was mentioned before but Construct lyrically continues in the style of that album which is not necessarily a bad thing. What follows here is not just another album review from one of the best melodic death metal bands in the world, but an album that even today carries much weight and significance.
For Broken Words starts off this album and it is a slow guitar song before the distortion and melody come in. The song brings attention to the fact that all of us have some kind of unconscious beliefs as we have been led to believe things that are not true. “The Science of Noise” lyrically speaks of a situation that even vocalist Mikael Stanne even mentioned in an interview which we will address shortly. It is this narrow minded view in which people fail to see things beyond what they can perceive beyond their own eyes. What we see in front of us is known as visible light but that's only a small part of what is available to us as human beings. There is more than what we see in front of us but people always want things to be their way without compromise.
Vocalist Mikael Stanne Explains Where the Lyrical Themes for Construct Came From
In an interview with Metalunderground.com, Mikael explained where the lyrical themes for the album Construct come from, saying that “I think that's the narrow-mindedness to not see things as they are.”1
Mikael is correct that some people just do not or cannot see things as they are and they may follow the words of someone that tells them something that they want to hear. Mikael goes on to basically say that he wished that people could be more honest and see things more clearly and rationally. The problem is that many people do not think rationally when they want to make a decision but they think with their emotions instead. The title of the album Construct is used in a negative way and Mikael says that the title signifies this sort of excuse that people make for doing the things that they do. It can be said that Construct can be seen as an album that really analyzes human nature, thought, emotions and similar feelings. Mikael also makes a reference to the fact that things are so screwed up.
Footnote Reference to Source
1 Ty Arthur, “Dark Tranquillity's Mikael Stanne Discusses New Album “Construct,”Metalunderground.com, April 29, 2013, http://www.metalunderground.com/news/details.cfm?newsid=91397.
On the surface, it may seem that way and while there are certain parts of the world that are in bad shape is everything really as bad as he says? What is not screwed up is this album Construct which once again shows the musical versatility of these Swedish guys.
"State of Trust"
Analysis of the Songs State of Trust and Weight of the End
In the song State of Trust, there is a very important basic question asked and that question is in regards to whether we can ever trust ourselves. This is the case when emotions take over rational thought. This brings back what Mikael said earlier about making excuses for things that we do that are counterproductive. This analysis was relevant in 2013 and it is especially relevant now because of the changes and effects caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. What has happened that it has come to this? That's the question that I ask as I write this album review.
“Weight of the End” lyrically makes reference to that shield that Mikael made reference to, that shield that we put up to make excuses for some of the actions that we take. If we are going to be that “shield” that metaphor in this song, we must be the catalyst for positive change. But are we willing to take those steps to change our actions to help make the world a better place?
The Significance of the Song None Becoming
Songs such as None Becoming bring awareness to the fact that people have this sort of blind faith as their minds are tainted with a “virus” of deception. Living your life to lie and deceive others is a highly counterproductive way to live. It is my hope that albums such as Construct can help wake up people especially here in the United States and make the realize that it does not benefit them to make excuses for doing things that are counterproductive for their lives. For instance, look at how divided the country is. That is a clear example of what Mikael was talking about. The news or certain magazines show how messed up certain things are. Construct may be the most lyrically thought provoking album that Dark Tranquillity has written up until now.
"Weight of the End"
Uniformity has that start that sounds more like a Gothic metal sound but it is pleasing to the ears. Lyrically the song is trying to tell us that it is because we have bias and deception within ourselves that poses a major problem for our survival as a species. It is no wonder why Mikael Stanne is angered by these biases in humans. If we do not face these biases and deceptions, we have already lost and are basically defeated. Construct is a good album but it still is not as good as Fiction though. Even so, this is another example of the musical innovation of this Swedish band. Construct is also the last album to have Martin Henriksson as a member. He would leave the band.
Arthur, Ty, “Dark Tranquillity's Mikael Stanne Discusses New Album Construct,” Metalunderground.com, April 29, 2013, http://www.metalunderground.com/news/details.cfm?newsid=91397.
© 2020 Ara Vahanian