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Catalyst – The Great Purpose Of The Lords Award winner

Catalyst
The Great Purpose Of The Lords
by James Brizuela at 13 August 2019, 2:06 AM

Hailing from the lands of France, CATALYST return with an absolute ripper of an album in “The Great Purpose Of The Lords”. Their first full-length album proving that the band has absolutely no intention of slowing down. At first listen I thought the intro track, “Omniscient Bodies”, was going to lead into a more folk-like band. Boy was I wrong. CATALYST is one of the most invigorating death metal bands I’ve heard in the last few years. I have found that most death metal bands don’t release this heavily track laden albums very often, so this is a treat.

The Great Purpose Of The Lords” provides a force majeure of technical and old school death metal mastery. Sitting at 12 tracks, the album is chock-full of punishing blast beats and impressive guitar work. What is refreshing about Catalyst, is their ability to combine their brutality but put a spin on their old school death metal sound to elevate it with clean backing vocals that are not heard so often. Similar in nature to death metal legends, DEATH, CATALYST brings a punishing groove to their old school sound.

The second track, “An Unworthy Covenant”, provides the tech death sound coupled with an almost folk metal tint to it. Funny as I mentioned before thinking they could possibly be a folk metal band and they provide some of that on the album. The track is over ten minutes in length but showcases the bands musical prowess so well. There is some killer guitar soloing and tempo changes that create great depth. There is some folk-like atmospheric sounds that close out the track with more beautiful guitar soloing. The track kicks back into the tech-death sound to remind you how brutal the band is. What I love about this track is the changing of the theme and tempo. You get absolute crushing death metal then it careens into this folk-like vibe. It’s a beautiful combination of violent death metal and relaxing serene musicianship.

The third and title track for the album, “The Great Purpose Of The Lords”, comes in and adds another layer of tonal depth. The track showcases some proggy sounds on top of the already brutal death metal sound. I found myself being completely surprised by CATALYST and their stunning musical depth. Once more for their folk-like sound comes in with the track, “First Light”. It is not often one gets treated to such a serene and beautiful song amid a bone crushing death metal album. It is a wonderful break to show the softer and atmospheric sounds that make this album so incredibly deep. Beautiful violin sounds and the sounds of rain falling lulled me right into another mental space. That was short lived as “In Mist We Are Born” kicks the intensity right back into high gear. Another brutal track, what is impressive is the adding of the clean backing vocals. It works so well. Blending that brutality with the serene backing elements just shows the thought process that went into writing this album. For a band that has only two releases, there is nothing about this album that isn’t impressive. The production, musicianship and genre blending are top tier.

I thought that since the first of the album was so strong, that there could possibly be a drop in the level that the back half would provide. That is not the case at all. “Celestial Resurrection” kicks off the back half of the album with a sort of power metal type cadence to it. Another showing of beautiful guitar work is presented via a guitar solo. Then there is a return to the atmospheric folk-like sounds. CATALYST is not messing around with their ability to throw in elements from many sub genres into such a cohesive and brutal sound. “From the Last Sunset…” brings in a more doom and black metal sound to add even more depth to this already impressive album, and “…To Chaos” comes in to finish the one-two punch of brutality. “The Empire That Failed” shows off some more instrumental musicianship but has a healthy balance of vocal work too, making it a well-rounded track. “The Council” is a wonderful instrumental interlude that sets up the final track, “For Whom Summons The Dead”.

The final track capping off this album in fantastic style with a resurrection of blending folk-like and black metal sounds. With a returning of the clean vocals to bring the initial sound of the opening track full circle. What really got to me was the yelling vocals that ended the track. It was such a powerful way to end the album. I could feel the intensity in it completely. There aren’t enough great things I can say about this album. It is a completely brilliant and cohesive sound of brutality and serenity.  There are hints of black, power, folk, and doom metal that create such a successful album in “The Great Purpose Of The Lords”. This will be on repeat for weeks to come. CATALYST should be on everyone’s radar. And being that this is their debut album, they absolutely deserve all the recognition.

Songwriting: 10
Originality: 10
Memorability: 10
Production: 10

5 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Omniscient Bodies
2. An Unworthy Covenant
3. The Great Purpose Of The Lords
4. First Light
5. In Mist We Are Born
6. Demophobia
7. Celestial Resurrection
8. From The Last Sunset…
9. …To Chaos
10. The Empire That Failed
11. The Council
12. For Whom Summons The Dead
Lineup:
Jules Kicks – Vocals, Guitars
Jefferson Brand – Bass, Vocals
Florian Iochem – Guitars, Vocals
Paul Loup – Drums
Record Label: Great Dane Records
     


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Edited 18 August 2019
 

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