In Shadows And Dust (2:24)
Beyond Salvation (4:10)
Illuminati (5:01)
Chronicles Of The Damned (3:11)
Bound In Chains (3:22)
Where The Enemy Sleeps (5:20)
Centuries (Beneath The Dark Waters) (5:56)
Face The Face Of War (5:09)
Years Of Enlightment/ Decades In  Darkness (5:13)




Maurizio Iacono - vocals
JF Dagenais - guitar
Stephane Barbe - bass
Max Duhamel - drums

KATAKLYSM: "Shadows & Dust"           kataklysm                                NBR
released 23.09.2002
review by dalia "gryphon_spirit" di giacomo____   
Ohh what  a cool surprise! This album really kicks ass, and the incredible fact is that so many metalheads will like it i presume, and not only the Death Metal freaks. I have rarely heard such a winning mixture of brutal assault and melody, so that the  canonic death Metal schemas merge with  aggressive heaviness  but also with dark melody, making this work  nearly accessible to a wide audience and really enjoyable in every track. Rarely  heard such breakdowns, such biting and sharp guitars, such extreme death rhythm turning in such catchy and involving tracks.

Kataklysm here simply prove to be one of best Death act and the production of the album is awesome. Well mixed and prepared, "Shadows & Dust" shoots  incredible bass tones without sacrificing a single instrument , so that every chords and guitar riffs are perfectly underlined. And vocals are well distinct, passing  in many passages from the typical death  grunts  timbres to the Black ones la Dani Filth.  And indeed there is in general no trace of monotony in this album, cause the time changes are numerous but fast and not difficult to be heard.  Brachiality, brutality, doom tones , snares assault , double bass drums, tremolo riffs, heavy rhythmic guitars, downtuned lead, melodic heavy metal, chorus inserts, well there is everything , and everything contributes to create  well balanced and well built songs , that in this period of intolerance between the various subgenres, are on the contrary a monument to the Metal, crossovering the heaviest and darkest genres, nearly reaching the threshold of Black. Everybody who likes Metal and is a little bit into Death, Doom Death, Heavy and (or) Black, will appreciate this album and will listen to its tracks for long long time, being enthralled  by the killing riffs and the gloomy  heaviness in the background, and by the melodies that appear masterfully  dissolving a little bit the tremendous assault which turns this way into nostalgia and sadness and even rough romanticism., without losing energy.

All tracks of this sixth album of the Canadian quartet  are valuable and brilliant, but if possible 2 of them are  considered by me as a masterpiece in their genre, so i would at once mention them : Beyond Salvation and Where the Enemy sleeps. In both songs the characteristics of the album are extremely highlighted. Aggression,  speed,  guitars strokes sharp like razors, incredible stop starts, powering death with black flavors interposed in a winning melody are the features of Beyond Salvation, incredible energetic track which is anyway able to offer  in a rush way a rose to every listener. Brutal but fully enjoyable, where lead notes will  caress you rough, deep bass and drums will throw in an abyss and hyperblast shoots will hit like a whip, supporting a pulsing restless moshing/headbanging rhythm . What it can seem  a sado maso  soundscape for the ears, shows itself, on the contrary, like a complete songs which will gift you with a lot of extreme emotions . More melodic, Where the enemy sleeps,  presents a good quantity of  angriness wrapped in recurring  melodies which will meet the European taste,  the rhythmic section rules while the mega speedy drums support the energy, guitar and bass work together in many tempo changes, while other changes support the down-tuned lead. Where the enemy sleeps is a masterpiece of rhythmic, a masterpiece of melodic death with some black influences, with  heavy nearly  mid tempo  melodic passages full of anger. 
In Shadows & Dust is the merciless opener, with a spoken initial part followed by  a fast assault where speedy drum beats  and slower heavy guitars reign uncontested . Illuminati is another  drum-guitar assault where the speedy background is tempered by slower and heavy passages. Chronicles of the Damned puts decisively in foreground the vocals , and more complex guitar works while often the proceeding shows heavy but rather slow loops. Bound in chains showcases a persistent stop-start riff with more distorted guitars, tempo changes from very fast tempos to slow ones, temperated by a good melody. Centuries shows another good schema of tempo changes and doom melodic moments, and the same we can say about  Face the Face of War, where again vocals are varied. The same vocals that we find in the  final Years of Enlightment, characterized by a spectacular melodic proceeding with drums bursts and  virtuoso guitar moments .  As already mentioned, a lot of metalheads will like this album and not only Cannibal Corpse or Six Feet Under fans but really the whole Death Metal people,  reaching also the sympathies of fans of bands like Agathodaimon  methinks or Marduk,  and i even would not exclude listeners of gothic metal too. (me for example!! hehehe)

Awesome. 10/10  and ....stay metal!

dalia di giacomo    

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