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Catacomb - Back to Unknown Kadath Award winner

Back to Unknown Kadath
by Ricardo Casagrande at 22 April 2022, 10:21 PM

CATACOMB is a Death metal band from a Mediterranean port city called Toulon, in the south of France. The band has been active on and off since they formed in 1990, and this is their first EP since 2001. This is a remastered EP of an earlier release called In the Maze of Kadath that the band put out in 1993. This seems to be the work of Benjamin and Anthony, forming the band in 1990 with Bress and Ronan joining in 2020. This marks the 30th anniversary of the release.

The EP starts off with the track “The Key” and this song has a strong dark element to it through the minute as the tension is pulled tight only to explode moments later with thundering double kick. Benjamin’s dark and sinister growl leads this song perfectly down a demented path as the guitars start with riff after killer riff. The bass is heavy and rumbling throughout the track and is well mixed into the track. The next song is “Hallucinated Mountains” and like the first track carries a Death/Doom metal feeling that unsets a feeling of gloomy nervousness. This song is also filled with powerful riffs and gradual rise and fall of the tempo as it accelerates towards the end. Some dueling solo’s work themselves into the track midway through and are well done as the drums and bass keep up a strong and thundering rhythm presence.

The third track on the EP is “Time’s Lunker” and unlike the previous songs it explodes into a destructive opening and has a thrash metal feeling at times. The guitars are great in this song and show a lot of creativity without trying to be too over the top. This song and along with the others on the EP have an almost ritualistic flow with the added background music and the guitars that create the sinister feeling that seems to drive the vocals. It fits itself together well. The final track is “Nemesis” and it fluctuates fluidly between hi-paced destructive chaos and mid-tempo melody. It is a well written track and features a great guitar solo towards the end along with cohesive guitar playing throughout. It is tough to find anything that doesn’t fit well with the song, it just rocks!

This is a great taste of what these guys can put together and can create a demand for more in the future. The music transforms itself multiple times within each track and there is no shortage of kick ass riffs to bang your head to. The remastering is really well done and the sound is great. The drums and bass rage throughout each of the songs with earth shaking power that the vocals capture with ease. What was a strong release in 1993, is still a strong release thirty years later.

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 8
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1.The Key
2.Hallucinated Mountains
3.Time’s Lunker
Benjamin Bussy - Vocals, Bass
Anthony Derycke - Guitars
Ronan Kermarec - Guitars
Bress - Drums
Record Label: Xenokorp


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