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Arcana 13 - Danza Macabre

Arcana 13
Danza Macabre
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 20 August 2016, 7:24 AM

ARCANA 13 is a Doom/Occult Heavy Metal band based out of Italy. This is their debut album, and contains eight tracks. “Dread Ritual” is the opening track. There is an authoritative voice speaking in Italian or Latin in the opening part of the song that echoes as if he were inside a church, performing a ritual. The mood is slow and somber and the vocals thick with reverb. This could be early BLACK SABBATH in many ways. The title track is a little shorter. It reminds of the band FIREBALL MINISTRY as it plods along, heavy and husky, as if you could almost reach out and touch it in the air. The chunky bass chords really play up the bottom end of the sound well. “Land of Revenge” is a little brighter in scope from the chords in the opening riff but the gloom is still there, it just slipped into the background a little more. I won’t say this is upbeat but perhaps not as despondent as earlier tracks, and retains some sweetness.

“Oblivion Mushroom” is an eight minute track where the Doom is absolutely ubiquitous. Like a mighty, aged mastodon on a lumbering journey though desolate snow covered land, it’s all about the steadiness of the pace rather than the time of arrival. “Suspiria” is shrouded in initial mystery, with a heavy ambiance and eerie programming to go along with the singular guitar notes that ring out like bells on a lonely mountaintop. Though purely instrumental, it’s very impactful. “The Holy Cult of Suicide” opens with a bass riff that is low and fuzzy, and soon joined by the drums and guitar with a little more pep. Doom does not have to be overly slow or always registering in the lowest range possible and this song definitely supports that notion.

Closing the album is the track “Hell Behind You.” I love the opening riff…it has a nice melodic sound to it. Sometimes simplicity isn’t overstated to the effect it can have in music. At times we look for deeper meaning but deeper doesn’t necessarily mean better. This is more of an emotional song for me that I connect well with. Overall, fans of this genre will find this album to their liking. It’s housed not too thick and low as some Doom can be, but it’s still on the same block.

Songwriting: 7
Originality: 7
Memorability: 7
Production: 8

3 Star Rating

1. Dread Ritual
2. Arcane XIII
3. Land of Revenge
4. Oblivion Mushroom
5. Suspiria
6. Blackmaster
7. The Holy Cult of Suicide
8. Hell Behind You
S. Bertozzi – Guitars and Vocals
A. Burdisso – Guitars and Vocals
F. Betrini – Bass
L. Taroni – Drums
Record Label: Aural Records


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