Artist: Structural Disorder

Album Title: Kingdom Crossing

Label: Independent Release

Date of Release: 4 September 2020

You’d think by now, that I’d get used to news of bands splitting up, retiring, or disappearing. But no. Every time I hear another band has ceased to be, it fills me with a sense of sadness and disappointment, especially when it’s a band that I am rather fond of. Unfortunately, the name Structural Disorder is now a name that will be consigned to the annals of history because they have called it a day. Actually, the Swedes called time on the band quite some time ago, but before they shuffle off to pastures new, the guys have given us one last hurrah, in the form of a one-track EP by the name of ‘Kingdom Crossing’.

It may only be a one-song EP, but it is a near 24-minute affair that provides a fitting swansong for a band that showed so much promise over a career that spanned seven years and three full-length albums. It also serves to remind us all just how disappointing it is to lose such a band.

At nearly 24 minutes, you’ll not be surprised to learn that the composition takes a number of different twists and turns throughout it’s life. And neither is it in a hurry, taking its own sweet time to develop various sounds, ideas and textures. The first four minutes are quiet and introspective, dominated by some bold synth sounds initially, before introducing a lovely melodic section that grows stronger with repeated listens. Acoustic guitars, relaxed drumming, nuanced bass-work, and gentle synth tones are overlaid by sensitive vocals, providing a relatively melancholy atmosphere. At the four-minute mark though, things change for the heavier.

The landscape intensifies before we’re hit with some classic, groovy progressive metal riffs, channelling a little Shadow Gallery if I’m not mistaken, in terms of tone and delivery. Either way, it’s an addictive affair. The extended instrumental workout includes synth solos and yet more boldness from the electronics, lending a more modern slant. As things progress and the twists and turns continue, we’re treated to more of a djent-style heavy, thunderous down-tuned riff or two, not dissimilar to more recent Haken, but in no way derivative.

A reprise of the serene opening melody mid-way through, during a quieter passage serves as a reminder just how effective it is, especially when it is beefed up by heavier, distorted guitar accents, which then segue into an emotional and melodious guitar solo.

If I had one criticism about this impressive composition, it would be that it’s likely to be the very last thing we’ll hear from this impressive band. When the ambition, dexterity, and skill is so high, it’s not an easy thing to accept. Nevertheless, if the old adage is to be believed, you should always leave the audience wanting more. As far as Markus Tälth (Guitar/Vocals), Jóhannes West (Electric Accordion/Vocals), Erik Arkö (Bass/Vocals), and Karl Björk (Drums) are concerned, that’s exactly what they have done. Thanks for the prog, guys, you will be missed.

The Score of Much Metal: 91%

Check out my reviews from 2020 right here:

Skeletal Remains – The Entombment Of Chaos

Prehistoric Animals – The Magical Mystery Machine (Chapter One)

Ihsahn – Pharos

Hinayana – Death Of The Cosmic
Oceans Of Slumber – Oceans Of Slumber
Okyr – Premorbid Intelligence
Manticora – To Live To Kill To Live
Pain Of Salvation – Panther
Vanishing Point – Dead Elysium
Unleash The Archers – Abyss
Veonity – Sorrows
Nyktophobia – What Lasts Forever
Ages – Uncrown
Awake By Design – Awake By Design
Black Crown Initiate – Violent Portraits Of Doomed Escape
Gaerea – Limbo
Buried Realm – Embodiment Of The Divine
Navian – Reset
Selenseas – The Outer Limits
Quantum – The Next Breath Of Air
Ensiferum – Thalassic
Long Distance Calling – How Do We Want To Live?
Airbag – A Day At The Beach
Re-Armed – Ignis Aeternum
Atavist – III: Absolution
Frost* – Others EP
Darker Half – If You Only Knew
Atavistia – The Winter Way
Astralborne – Eternity’s End
Centinex – Death In Pieces
Haken – Virus
Pile Of Priests – Pile Of Priests
Sorcerer – Lamenting Of The Innocent
Lesoir – Mosaic
Temnein – Tales: Of Humanity And Greed
Caligula’s Horse – Rise Radiant
…And Oceans – Cosmic World Mother
Vader – Solitude In Madness
Shrapnel – Palace For The Insane
Sinisthra – The Broad And Beaten Way
Paradise Lost – Obsidian
Naglfar – Cerecloth
Forgotten Tomb – Nihilistic Estrangement
Winterfylleth – The Reckoning Dawn
Firewind – Firewind
An Autumn For Crippled Children – All Fell Silent, Everything Went Quiet
Havok – V
Helfró – Helfró
Victoria K – Essentia
Cryptex – Once Upon A Time
Thy Despair – The Song Of Desolation
Cirith Ungol – Forever Black
Igorrr – Spirituality and Distortion
Nightwish – Human. II: Nature.
Katatonia – City Burials
Wolfheart – Wolves Of Karelia
Asenblut – Die Wilde Jagd
Nicumo – Inertia
The Black Dahlia Murder – Verminous
Omega Infinity – Solar Spectre
Symbolik – Emergence
Pure Reason Revolution – Eupnea
Irist – Order Of The Mind
Testament – Titans Of Creation
Ilium – Carcinogeist
Dawn Of Ouroboros – The Art Of Morphology
Torchia – The Coven
Novena – Eleventh Hour
Ashes Of Life – Seasons Within
Dynazty – The Dark Delight
Sutrah – Aletheia EP
Welicoruss – Siberian Heathen Horde
Myth Of I – Myth Of I
My Dying Bride – The Ghost Of Orion
Infirmum – Walls Of Sorrow
Inno – The Rain Under
Kvaen – The Funeral Pyre
Mindtech – Omnipresence
Dark Fortress – Spectres From The Old World
The Oneira – Injection
Night Crowned – Impius Viam
Dead Serenity – Beginnings EP
The Night Flight Orchestra – Aeromantic
Deadrisen – Deadrisen
Blaze Of Perdition – The Harrowing Of Hearts
Godsticks – Inescapable
Isle Of The Cross – Excelsis
Demons & Wizards – III
Vredehammer – Viperous
H.E.A.T – H.E.A.T II
Psychotic Waltz – The God-Shaped Void
Into The Open – Destination Eternity
Lunarsea – Earthling/Terrestre
Pure Wrath – The Forlorn Soldier EP
Sylosis – Cycle of Suffering
Sepultura – Quadra
Dyscordia – Delete / Rewrite
Godthrymm – Reflections
On Thorns I Lay – Threnos
God Dethroned – Illuminati
Fragment Soul – A Soul Inhabiting Two Bodies
Mariana Semkina – Sleepwalking
Mini Album Reviews: Moloken, The Driftwood Sign & Midnight
Serenity – The Last Knight
Ihsahn – Telemark EP
Temperance – Viridian
Blasphemer – The Sixth Hour
Deathwhite – Grave Image
Marko Hietala – Pyre Of The Black Heart
SWMM – Trail Of The Fallen
Into Pandemonium – Darkest Rise EP
Bonded – Rest In Violence
Serious Black – Suite 226
Darktribe – Voici L’Homme
Brothers Of Metal – Emblas Saga
A Life Divided – Echoes
Thoughts Factory – Elements

You can also check out my other reviews from previous years right here:

2019 reviews
2018 reviews
2017 reviews
2016 reviews
2015 reviews