Justified - Inside Revealed
Justified is a new band from the west coast of Sweden and the line-up with shared male and female vocals gives them away as a gothic metal band. Although that is not entirely true. While some of the songs are heavily influenced by gothic metal others seem to be influenced from an entirely different direction with more classic heavy metal.
The first track, also the title track, is of the slower gothic and melancholic kind and it comes with a calm and acoustic touch. The male voice from P-O makes me think about Peter Steele from Type O Negative while the female vocals from Jenny are light and sounds fragile, and the one thing that they have in common is that they both sound pale, they feel out of place and what is worse out of tune at times. The song itself feels a bit boring and uninspired to me, they try to make it sound beautiful but to me it sounds only ugly. With The Ballad Of Tomorrow which is the second song it's starting to sound much better. The guitars feel aggressive and not least plugged in. This track is heavier, faster and has a solid ground with the riffing. And the song also has a guitar line that - combined with the sound and speed - makes me think of early Paradise Lost. Both vocals sound better and with the harsher male vocals it fits much better.
When I get to the third track there is a serious change in the music, and only for the better. You Always Knew is a refreshing up-tempo track with a galloping rhythm and traces of old Metallica shine through with the riffing guitars. Musically this comes close to early Iced Earth and even if the delivery isn't perfect, this is a good song. The vocals are considerably better from both, still a bit unstable though but now it fits well with the music. This is simply heavy metal and the goth influences are swept away and if you ask me this is the direction Justified should strife for. I especially like the speedy ending with the guitar solo, which is really good and give the song a good touch of thrash metal.
The fourth and last song comes with a strong Iced Earth ambience with the beginning of the song. It is dark and powerful heavy metal just like on the Iced Earth album Burnt Offerings, and also with the structure of They Are Calling Me it has some strong resemblances to Iced Earth. This is the most complex song on the demo with tempo shifts and breaks, and also the strongest song on the demo. Good guitars with both leads and riffs that gives it a hard and aggressive edge just like with You Always Knew.
To me it feels like Justified are uncertain where to go
with their musical direction. Stylish the demo could be divided into
two half's, and the grade on the two first songs is not that high in
my book. While the later two is distinguishably much better, not least
because their voices suit way much better for that kind of music, and
that kind of music also suits my taste better and the grade gets higher.