If I had to offer comparatives of any sort as to what AE sound like these days I honestly don't think I could be any more accurate than to say that they have on Doomsday Machine managed to successfully combine both the glinting-frost melodic aggression of the Swedish Gothenburg scene with the six-string technical prowess of latter-years Megadeth (more specifically Symphony of Destruction/Youthanasia-era 'Deth).
Doomsday Machine received mixed reviews by critics. Adrien Begrand of PopMatters praised the songs highlighting "Enter the Machine", "Nemesis" and "My Apocalypse". He said that Michael and Christopher Amott "truly shine on the album" and that Arch Enemy "marry the brutal with the melodic" with "impressive skill". Tom Day of musicOMH, that also praised "Enter the Machine" calling it of "a prime example of metal at its very, very best... This instrumental is simply breathtaking", said that Arch Enemy "set themselves apart from so many mediocre death metal acts by never letting their songs stagnate." Pal Meentzen of Maelstrom said that Doomsday Machine "gives a worthy example of the best in current day (Swedish) melo-death. It is a slightly better album than Wages of Sin and much better than Anthems of Rebellion" and called "My Apocalypse" of "perfect example of a band that has found the right consistency in its line-up." However, he criticized the fade out of "Slaves of Yesterday". Evil Rocker of Metal Rules noted that "perhaps the most impressive aspect of this album is the heavy use of dual guitars and solo's, not something usually in the forefront of this genre." Jackie Smit of Chronicles of Chaos felt that the album presents significant improvements over the previous album Anthems of Rebellion and commented that it "as a whole is likely to disappoint only the most selective listener." Eduardo Rivadavia of Allmusic said that Doomsday Machine is "fundamentally, yet another immaculately produced Arch Enemy album, forged first and foremost by the vision of Michael Amott's guitar." Ciaran Meeks of Metal Eater commented that the band "have harked back to their roots on this album, reworking and revitalizing the musical philosophy of albums such as Stigmata and Burning Bridges into a new-millennial context that will doubtless bludgeon both old and new listeners alike into drop-jawed submission."
Tajs Kolman of RevelationZ Magazine noted that the songs are mixed a lot and that the album "started out great with some killer songs and an amazing sound but they obviously put the hits in the beginning. If the rest of the songs could have kept up the standard of the first ones, they would probably have had a serious hit in their hands." Nevertheless, he commented that apart from these few problems, it "stands out with its most impressive production, the amazing guitar solos and generally solid musicianship." Tony Belcher of Tartarean Desire liked of the band, but unlike Westland, Belcher criticized the Gossow vocals and the lyrics. He praised Andy Sneap stating that his "touch is masterful" and mentions that the album is better than Anthems of Rebellion and similar to Wages of Sin. Michael Dalakos of Metal Temple felt that the album "catches the band at its best." He praised the guitar solos stating that "simply must be the best Amott has ever delivered with this band in their entire career." However, Dalakos mentions that in the record it is really hard to figure out the Gossow actual voice since it is covered with layers of effects and that "she's just another growler using technology". On the other hand, Lords of Metal's Ralph, stated that the "vocal achievement of Angela Gossow make this album the ultimate combination of aggression and melody."
Jason Jordan of Metal Review wrote a negative review where he states that the band "haven't crafted anything purchase-worthy since Johan Liiva was fronting the crew." Jordan also comments that "while Doomsday Machine isn't utterly devoid of arresting ingredients, you probably won't glean as much satisfaction from this as you will from Black Earth or Burning Bridges." MetalGeorge of Metal Rules also criticized the album saying that it "severs all ties between the band and [its] old fan base by catering even more to the plague that is the New Wave of American Heavy Metal" and that "where as albums such as Burning Bridges and Wages of Sin lead the heavy metal charge, Doomsday Machine seems content to merely follow in the trodden footsteps of today's trends and common sounds." Greg Pratt of Exclaim! wrote that the album is "basically more of the same but they've managed to revitalise their sound a bit, adding in some toe-tapping maturity, along with the usual balls-out shredding." Cosmo Lee of Stylus Magazine concluded that "minus that instrumental, and with more focused songwriting, this album could have been killer. Instead, it is a collection of riffs strung together, with some hot guitar playing." Keith Bergman of Blabbermouth.net said that "overall, the album leaves a pretty good impression, though it seems to be lacking a certain spark that made earlier efforts essential listening." Not unlike him, Justin Donnelly of Blistering felt that the album "lies somewhere in between both damnation and acclaim, without being one of the other." He commented that the record is not terrible, but "an inconsistent and unfocussed effort" and that Doomsday Machine "overall is stronger than Anthems of Rebellion, but it is hardly a huge leap forward in terms of consistency."
The end of the lyrics to "Skeleton Dance" recite the death poem of Ōta Dōkan. The beginning of "Skeleton Dance" contains backmasked messages containing the phrases "The world on his shoulders" and "Bleeding forever" among others.