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Fans of The Haunted have been pretty disappointed over the past six years. While the band's first four records are still holding up well in the metal community, their most recent two (2008's Versus and 2011's Unseen) have been widely panned as pretty terrible. From thrashy Gothenburg death metal to… heavy-ish art rock? Something like that. The bottom line is that Versus and Unseen are a fat wad of spit in the face of an otherwise solid discography. That being said, The Haunted's most recent effort Eye of the Storm is the hand to wipe away that spit and restore their fans' faith once more.

It's worth noting that Eye of the Storm sees the return of former vocalist Marco Aro, who departed the group in 2003; drummer Adrian Erlandsson, who departed the group in 1999; and Ola Englund, of Feared and Six Feet Under fame. Combine those members with founding rhythm guitarist Patrik Jensen and bassist Jonas Björler and all the ingredients are there for an extremely solid release.

Eye of the Storm consists of three tracks, the first two being "Eye of the Storm" and "Infiltrator." Both songs may as well have been right off of 2000's Made Me Do It or 2003's One Kill Wonder, and I mean that in the best way possible. The songs just have that old-school grind, that pure fucking metal energy to them to that hasn't been present in a while. The riffs are memorable, the vocals are scream-along-able, and at the end of the day these two songs will kick your ass.

Then there's the third song, "My Enemy," which clocks in at an almost unbearably lengthy 59-seconds and is easily one of the heaviest songs the band has ever written. "My Enemy" is written in a way where you hear a riff enough for it to be familiar the next time though, but you better be paying attention or else it's going to fly right by you. This is the closes The Haunted have ever come to inventing Slayer-grindcore… and it rules.

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