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Katavasia - Magnus Venator

Magnus Venator
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 18 August 2020, 6:58 AM

From their Facebook page, KATAVASIA is a unique evil Greek alliance including members of well-known occult act VARATHRON, Prog Blacksters AENAON, gloomy Doomsters AGNES VEIN & Psychedelic masters HAIL SPIRIT NOIR. KATAVASIA’s sound is based in original 90's Greek Black Metal. The Mediterranean dark spirits are revived through the unique heavy metal chants and unholy epic riffs. “Magnus Venator” contains nine tracks.

“Daughters of Darkness” leads off the album. It’s old school Black Metal for sure…screaming vocals, unrelenting drumming, and a wall of guitar riffs. But, there is also some variation here…some modernization if you will. That secondary riff is bossy and beguiling. There is also an ambient passage where it gathers to breathe. “The Tyrant” opens with some spoken word that is hard to make out. The voice is angry however, and it leads to a steady riff and discernible bass guitar notes. It has a standard Black Metal sound, but the more modern elements keep it relevant in today’s music scene.

“Blood be my Crown” opens with a full-on assault. It’s a more traditional sounding approach overall. But, the riff changes to a staccato pattern around the half-way mark, as a guitar solo springs forth; one thing you don’t often hear in Black Metal. “Chthonic Oracle” is shorter in length but with no less punch. It’s pretty intense the entire way through. “Saturnalia Magnus Cult” is even shorter…coming in at just over two-minutes in length. Bass notes and some background atmosphere occupy the first part of the song, and it has a long fade-out. “Triumphant Fate” features some atmospheric elements to go along with the horrid Black Metal style. The riff stays relatively safe however and doesn’t venture out too much.

“Sinistral Covenant” comes at you hard out of the gates, with heavy, pulsating drums and some fanciful guitar work. Aggressive and angry, it continues its attack throughout the song. “Hordes of Oblivion” opens with a steady, heavy aggression with vile vocals. The riff changes a few times, proving some much needed diversity on the album. Another great guitar solo really adds fuel to the fire here. “Babylon (Sammu-Rawat)” closes the album. It’s an over-seven-minute opus. It features a slower and steadier rhythm to go along with the vile vocals. It builds to a frenzy as the half-way mark approaches, with galloping drumming, then it backs off for a few moments, as the evil regroups and rebuilds. Bass guitar begins to thump away, then the song returns full-bore through the end.

Overall, I found the album to my liking. The team here is obviously quite skilled in the genre, and took some chances, but just not enough IMO. Within the genre of Black Metal, the boundaries can be quite wide. But, you have to want to reach out and push them aside, so that you don’t end up sounding to much like your peers. As I mentioned, they do push the boundaries a bit, but not enough for me. Still, a solid album that I think all Black Metal fans will like.

Songwriting: 7
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 7
Production: 7

3 Star Rating

1. Daughters of Darkness
2. The Tyrant
3. Blood be my Crown
4. Chthonic Oracle
5. Saturnalia Magnus Cult
6. Triumphant Fate
7. Sinistral Covenant
8. Hordes of Oblivion
9. Babylon (Sammu-Rawat)
Stefan Necroabyssious – Screams
Astrous – Guitars
Achilleas C. – Guitars & Bass
D.K. – Guitars
Foivos – Drums
Record Label: Floga Records


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