The challenge bands face while playing a style of music that’s even remotely trendy is finding a way for themselves to stand out from the rest of the scene. This is especially true in melodic death metal. The Gothenburg sound has been used and abused by countless bands over the years, to the point that when the mid-2000’s came around some of the originators of the sound were virtually indistinguishable from the rest. On the other hand, band’s like Arch Enemy not only remained ahead of the bunch, but also released some of their career defining albums during the new millennium.
In retrospect, it’s easy to believe that Arch Enemy would remain strong even through the middle-part of their career. This was always a band willing to think outside the box, and with a solid line-up they were able to thrive. Special acknowledgement will always go to the Amott brothers for their knowledge of composition and impressive skill as guitarists. These attributes alone really helped Arch Enemy to differentiate themselves from the average Swedish death metal band. As for the vocals, Angela Gossow is easily one of the most aggressive vocalists to come out of the melodeath scene, tied maybe only with Tomas Lindberg.
It wasn’t just a few individual members that made the band great during this era. As a whole, Arch Enemy brought varying influences into their sound, including but not limited to thrash, neo-classical, progressive and death metal. The result was a fresh take on extreme metal, that of which helped to give them a leg up on many of their peers. When you really look at it Arch Enemy excelled in technicality, melodies, and above all aggression.