The Unguided – “Lust and Loathing” (Napalm Records)
After their spectacular split from Sonic Syndicate, the co-founding Sjunnesson brothers (and clean vox Roland Johansson) found themselves even more out in the cold when their cousin Robin Sjunnesson refused to sign a contract allowing them to play their old songs! Well, they may just have the last laugh as The Unguided is close enough to old Sonic Syndicate with even more passion and alt pop added to make a teen’s heart bleed and a grown man cry. Wrongly labelled by many as ‘melodic death metal’, The Unguided continue with a mix of clean and harsh metalcore vocals (from Richard Sjunnesson) backed by some heavy duty melodies, both from the twin guitars of Roger Sjunnesson and Roland Johansson, and in no small measure from the Roger’s massively injected synth pop melodies. With even more boy band vocal harmonies and catchy killer singalong choruses, The Unguided come as close to the commercial edge as any band might dare. Nevertheless, the harsh driving rhythm of ‘The Worst Day (Revisited)’, the rock out solos like on opener ‘Enraged’ and Richard’s screamo will always guarantee to keep these guys in the ‘alt’ category. “Lust and Loathing” closes off a trilogy that’s been in the making for 6 years and listening to songs like the hard hitting ‘King Of Clubs’ with its futuristic keys mixed with passionate guitar, the heavy but heart throbbing ‘Black Eyed Angel‘ and by the emotional, roaring closer of ‘Hate (and Other Triumphs)‘ it’s clear that the Sjunnessons have not only shredded their throats but put their hearts and souls into this one.