I Killed the Prom Queen compositions are a diverse cross section of metal and mathcore genres that maintain the interest of a niche market. It’s not easy to bring multiple elements of metal together in one album let alone each and every tack while maintaining a high integrity of production. The attack and release settings on compressors, decay and feedback on reverb/delays all need to be set just right to capture the essence of blasting, thrash and anthemic metal that is IKTPQ.
Once you move past the pleasant intro of ‘Beginning of the End’, fierce rolling drums activates ‘To The Wolves’, this is where the LP starts. The characteristic low guttural death metal screams supported by the traditional thrash cross death metal riff is quick to remind you these guys mean business.
To The Wolves film clip
‘Bright Enough’ cycles through a variety of influences including anthemic singing presented in conversation style with the guttural vocals. Check the quiet amongst the storm at 2:49 highlighting a Jazz influence. The energy is maintained in ‘Melior’, at 1:15 the group pull together for one of those classic tight segments in metal characterised by a head rockin’, moshing groove that would have the most conservative of fans enjoying themselves unable to sit still. The second tight segment at 2:51 welcomes a string section that takes the song out that fits in like a well-oiled machine.
‘Thirty One & Sevens’ tones things down slightly not with-standing the double kick cross punk/pop metal feel. At 2:30 there is some alternate timings that just work and force you to listen to what’s going on. This section of music is a highlight on the LP. The first 30 seconds of ‘Calvert Street’ is in your face metal, the transition between various genres is evidence that this group have a strong skill set when writing and organising the arrangements for their music. The production is of high value leaving much recognition for Fredrik Nordström.
After a 30 second gentle opening ‘Kjӕrlighet’ is unlocked with intense melodies, double kicks and an opulent sound scape. This could be the metal ballad for the album, delivered with all the mandatory punches metal requires. The ‘Beaten Path’ is filled with the necessary ingredients and punches, don’t miss the prog-rock guitar solo around 2:40.
‘Nightmares’ starts with a nice filter courtesy of the producer. The section starting at 1:30 has a wide appeal and is followed with an excellent change at 1:48. Again there is some good production work that reminds you of the heavy panning when mixing guitar’s in this style of metal. ‘No One Will Save Us’ and ‘Brevity’ continue with the consistent approach to quality that takes the album to it’s conclusion.
Beloved is a modern metalcore classic and to date IKTPQs most thoughtful and deliberate work. The production value is top dollar and deserves much recognition. Fredrik Nordström who has Arch Enemy, Opeth, Bring me the Horizon and At the Gates amongst others to his credit has given this album the edge it well deserves.