Soilwork’s second single from their new album is called Full Moon Shoals. Full Moon Shoals will feature on the band’s 11th studio album, Verkligheten which is due to be released on the 11th of January via Nuclear Blast.
The Swedish melodic death metallers have 23 years of experience and poured all of that into the superb first single released from Verkligheten. That track is called Arrival. You can read our thoughts on it here. It is a real banger and certainly makes me excited to hear this next track, Full Moon Shoals.
Soilwork are fronted by founding member and vocalist, Björn Strid (Speed). Alongside Strid is keyboard player Sven Karlsson and rhythm guitarist Sylvain Coudret. On lead guitar is David Andersson. On drums is Bastian Thusgaard and finally, on bass is Taylor Nordberg. Taylor is presently just listed as a touring member making Soilwork, technically, a 5 piece.
Let’s get stuck into Full Moon Shoals then. The track is a bit longer than Arrival being around 4 minutes and 45 seconds in length. Having that extra time over Arrival, the band play on the melodic side much more than in that first single. We start straight off with a nice little melodic guitar and a bit of keyboard backing. A building drum starts to gently creep in before a crunch of electric guitar kicks the song off. Strid come sin with a short roar and the riff starts getting going. It’s a bit of an odd riff at first, almost having an 80’s rock feel to it and sounds a little disjointed. It fades out after a while to allow the first verse to start.
Strid sings it cleanly over some atmospheric keys, occasional guitar notes but a quick, tapping drum rhythm. It is a nice sound but lacks a bit of bite. Thankfully you really don’t have to wait long for the bite to come. The music keeps it’s melodic edge but the vocals turn to growls and passionate shouts. The pre chorus is excellent. A delightful mix of harmonised vocals. Cleans and uncleans together. I love that. The chorus pops in and is clean, melodic and catchy. It has a bit of a power metal feel to it. A bit epic. It ends with roars that leads back into the opening riff. I am still not sure about this riff to be honest.
Otherwise though, I love it. The second chorus, that prechorus and then the infectious melodic beauty of the chorus. An extended roar at the end of the second chorus signals something coming and we transition into the full on death side of melodeath. Vicious vocals, a fast riff and powerful drums are sure to open up the pit. We get a solo here too which is fine but not mind blowing before we are back to the chorus for the approach of the end which comes with a fade back into gentle melody.
Full Moon Shoals is a really good song. It is very different to Arrival and much more expansive and broad. I like a lot about it. I like the vocals, the verses and harmonising. The speed up near the end, and the melodic music during the prechorus, is excellent and then the chorus itself is so full of layers and depth. I don’t really like the main riff at the beginning of the song though. It just doesn’t sound quite right for my ears. That aside though, Soilwork look like they are on fire at the moment. Two cracking songs and Verkligheten is looking like it will be a banging album!
Full Moon Shoals is out now on all the usual streaming services, like Apple Music and Spotify. You can preorder Verkligheten from Nuclear Blast by following the link. Find out more about Soilwork at their website, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Soilwork will alos be appearing alongside the likes of Sabaton, Cradle of Filth and Children of Bodom at the UK’s best heavy metal festival. The 2019 edition of Bloodstock Open Air. Visit here to grab your ticket for that amazing event.
Full Moon Shoals by Soilwork (Verkligheten)
The Final Score - 8/10