Foregone is undoubtedly the first In Flames album that’s actually piqued our curiosity since, well, since Reroute To Remain nigh on 20 years ago! Recently released single “Meet Your Maker” had enough about it to make our ears prick (so to speak) and instead of dry-heaving upon greeting the entirety of Foregone, we found ourselves almost (almost!) looking forward to giving the thing a spin. Weird, right?!
Before we get carried away and make right royal fools of ourselves let’s recap. This once beloved band haven’t just been on a bad run, they’ve released probably the worst albums from a once respected band in the history of metal…. and that includes Metallica! Everything from 2004’s Soundtrack To Your Escape to 2019’s I, The Mask has been woeful, with each successive album falling down a rabbit-hole of abject mediocrity and ever- diminishing returns.
So, what makes album number 14, any different?
It’s not that Foregone contains material that can even be described as ‘classic’ In Flames, it’s simply that this is actually good new music from the band. And for that, we’re eternally grateful.
Whatever you do, don’t go expecting an album to rival The Jester Race, Whoracle, Colony, or Clayman, as you won’t find it here. What you will find is a band that have seemingly re-found their love for ‘metal’ and the ability to actually pen some good melodeath tunes once again. Sure, the over-production of Anders’ vocals still irks but that can be forgiven when the likes of “Bleeding Out” and “Foregone Pt.1” kick in.
In our review of 2019’s risible I, The Mask we declared “there may be no way back for a band who were once at the forefront of the melodeath scene”. Well, we’re big enough to eat our words as we 100% believe that Foregone places In Flames firmly back on the road to redemption…. even if they haven’t quite made up for past transgressions just yet! 7/10
Yes – 7/10 – we can’t quite believe it ourselves
In Flames‘ Foregone was released on February 10th, 2023 via Nuclear Blast