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Terra Relicta Top 20 Of 2018



01. Aeon Sable
- Aether
02. Amorphis
- Queen Of Time
03. Atrium Carceri
- Codex
04. Dimmu Borgir
- Eonian
05. Behemoth
- I Loved You At Your Darkest
06. The Eternal
- Waiting For The Endless Dawn
07. MGT
- Gemini Nyte
08. Primordial
- Exile Amongst The Ruins
09. Khôrada
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10. Immortal
- Northern Chaos Gods

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Random album

Katatonia - Dead End Kings (2012) - Review

Band: Katatonia
Album title: Dead End Kings
Release date: 24 August 2012
Label: Peaceville Records

Tracklisting:
01. The Parting
02. The One You Are Looking For Is Not Here [feat. Silje Wergeland]
03. Hypnone
04. The Racing Heart
05. Buildings
06. Leech
07. Ambitions
08. Undo You
09. Lethean
10. First Prayer
11. Dead Letters

Katatonia are back with their ninth studio album. When the time comes for these masters of melancholic rock or metal sounds every fan of theirs is expecting a masterpiece and Katatonia don't disappoint, never. Since their album Discouraged Ones and even before on their more extreme albums Katatonia mastered their sound that comes in its most formidable form right here, right on this album. Of course, many of their past fans will miss the metal parts as they are in minority here. Katatonia, since Discouraged Ones, have gone in the direction of crafting emotional, melancholic and yet complex sounds, more common with prog rock, goth and 70's music than with their origins of doom/death metal. This band actually cannot be counted as the follower of any genre, they are co-creators of it, similar to their country mates Opeth, thus having a huge group of followers and giving inspiration to many new bands on the market.

On Dead End Kings Katatonia offer a lot, and I mean really a lot once you dive into the sounds of those eleven tracks present up here. We can enjoy in catchiness that was so elaborated on Last Fair Deal Gone Down or on Viva Emptiness, in melancholy that was perfected on previous effort Night Is The New Day  and in complexivity that was heard on The Great Cold Distance, plus a lot more. Dead End Kings is a strong album, songs can be counted as a stand alone tracks or as parts of one entirety. If somebody was afraid how the band will deal with itself after the departure of long term members Norrman brothers, they already proved that they can cope with this matter on their amazing live appearances. Sodomizer on guitar and Niklas with bass have shown that the trusted position in the band is much deserved. Jonas with his distinguishable emotive voice and Anders's trade mark gloomy guitar riffing are one of a kind. Then, with wonderful and at parts bombastic Daniels drumming everything derives into a subtle form of majestical rock music. On this album there are no stand alone hits, like it was "Teargas", "Evidence" or perhaps "July", but rather memorable parts in each of the songs included on this work. Dead End Kings is not an album that could be grasped with first listen, it needs your full devotion to flourish in it's fullness. Since the opener "The Parting" with it's masterful string and cello layers, crushing wall of sound in its chorus, everything wracked by a huge amount of melancholy, make us aware that this is not an ordinary record, yes, none of Katatonia albums are. Guest female vocals from Silje Wergeland (The Gathering) on "The One You Are Looking For Is Not Here" forms a delicate duet with Jonas and delivers shivering emotions on this calm mellow track. Melodic, haunting and highly captivating emotions on atmospheric "The Racing Heart" are what you'll need to survive through the approaching winter. Its chorus is something among the best that Katatonia ever did and it brings some memories to "Tonight's Music" from Last Fair Deal Gone Down and I must mention its fade-out conclusion which is amazing. Progressive, most metal kind of a song must be "Buildings", where all Katatonia qualities of making strong tracks comes on the surface.  Piano touches that beautifully enriches the sound in "Leech" or even more in "Undo You" adds another dimension to Katatonia sound. Nice drive of "Lethean" will certainly take you on the amazing journey into fogy landscape full of sorrow and lost hope. Guitar riffs and solo in this one are breathtaking. "First Prayer" on the other hand offers a lot of resemblances with 70's prog and atmospheric sounds, everything combined so well with classic Katatonia sounds. The last track "Dead Letters" is heavy, intensively alternative and it gives the need for more. The sound is throughout rich, with a lot of additions from keyboards and other sample sounds under domain from guest Frank Default, from sophisticated and almost gothic atmospheres to progressive elements. Depressive and thoughtful lyrics show the superb sense for poetry from Jonas. Melancholy and gloomy atmospheres are what is present all over the album, like on everything that this band ever did. Production for Dead End Kings was done by main members Jonas and Anders themselves, yet it gives to their music another special, deep note and kind of warmth.

Still, Katatonia remains one of a kind rock group, modern and at the same time classy. With each new album of theirs there comes a question: what more? Katatonia can do more, each time, the limits of creating wanders in rock or metal music are not reached yet and those Sweds are proving this. With each listen there is a lot to discover in its waste assortment of sounds and overall complexity. Dead End Kings is one hell of an album and it deserves the highest possible rating.

Review written by: T.V.
Rating: 10/10

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Album title: Identities
Release date: 19 June 2015
Label. Echozone/Ressurection Records

When the London based four piece Red Sun Revival released their debut album, Running From The Dawn, in 2012, the gothic rock fans were nothing but mesmerized and hooked by its ethereal emotional melodies, yet very personal and deeply moving songs. Then the EP named Embers brought one hell of a promising four tracks where the band showed even more matured compositional skills. With Identities the band got even more unique sound, even though the typical gothic rock elements perfected before by The Mission, Nosferatu, The Cure and Fields Of The Nephilim are present all over, but done in such kind of soundtrack-ish style, with pinch of pop like edge in some rhythmic lines, with emotions pouring out with every chord, every beat and every word, I don't believe we ever heard something alike before. Identities with all of the ten featured songs is as opposed to the debut album written not only by bands mastermind Rob Leydon, this time also bassist Panos Theodoropoulous took a part in the compositional process and the consequence are even more flowing, lush and original soundscapes, even Rob Leydon's voice has almost nothing to do anymore with Carl McCoy. In a way I can go as far and say that if later era Pink Floyd were ever going to make gothic rock then something similar could came up. Identities offers a myriad of amazing moments that flow like a tender warm breeze of the most refined darkness, thus exposing all of its beauty to the one who'll give to this release a careful listen.

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