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I dig this album quite a bit, though some parts quite a bit more than others. 'The Resurrection Of Everything Tough' is essentially a heavy metal album with unclean vocals: sort of like Painmuseum, only replacing Iron Maiden with Deep Purple when it comes to influence. A heavy dash of melodic death metal is present, but by far the heaviest emphasis here is on traditional proto/heavy metal, albeit in a fairly modernized fashion. But despite this modernity, Beyond The Sixth Seal manages to kick ass with the best of the oldschool.
This being said, I dig the first half of this album quite a bit more than the second, but it's more a matter of strength than weakness. It's hard for any other songs on this LP to compete with these, such as the most melodeath influenced track on the album, opener 'Nothing To Prove', or the strange fusion of classic rock and melodeath on 'My Terrifying Ally', the neoclassical guitars on 'Reverly'. Of course, the second half has its gems as well: 'Yawning Of The Gale' is a particularly potent track. The melodies of each track, though clearly inspired by the 'US Gothenburg' bands that you see around today, never fail to be engaging and well composed, and the omnipresent lead guitars surprisingly lack cheese.
Also surprisingly, the death metal vocals seem perfectly natural in this music. These aren't even the light Stanne-style growls: these are full, robust death vocals that wouldn't sound out of place on late Morbid Angel. And yet despite this strange dichotomy between melody and relative brutality, these contrasting elements never seem to clash with each other in an unpleasant way. Indeed, this combination is pleasing to the ear, perhaps with each taking the more extreme edge off the other, resulting in a more moderate, measured LP. At least, I find it pleasing; others may find such a mix to be against their tastes.
The only parts where this CD really falters is on the slower, more Sabbathy songs. The band simply isn't geared towards that style, and they clearly excel at their faster, more energetic tracks. However, the album as a whole is quite good, and these few diversions do little to slow it down. For those looking for an interesting combination of melody and brutality, you should give Beyond The Sixth Seal's 'The Resurrection Of Everything Tough' a try. It might just be what you're looking for.
(Originally written for www.vampire-magazine.com)