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Ketzer - Cloud Collider

Cloud Collider
by Martin Knap at 20 May 2019, 7:07 PM

KETZER – German for heretic – are a Blackened Thrash band from Western Germany who have been around since 2003. Before the release of their third album “Starless” they’ve signed with Metal Blade Records, who is also releasing “Cloud Collider” now. The band started out with a straight-forward Black/Thrash sound, but for their last release they shifted direction quite a bit: on “Starless” they lean towards Melodic MERCYFUL FATE influenced melodic Heavy Metal (think TRIBULATION or IN SOLITUDE) and Goth Rock (not full-on SISTERS OF MERCY Goth Rock, but it had something from mid period PARADISE LOST, TIAMAT etc.). People who think that they have “fallen off” (after a casual listen I personally didn’t dislike “Starless”) will be happy that KETZER are bringing the Metal back on their newest LP. The songs are hard-hitting, but good hooks that give their music that evil MERCYFUL FATE vibe are worked in as well.

Keine Angst” opens with an ominous guitar riff, but the verse comes in with full-on Black Metal aggression and fury, the tension is released in the chorus, which is still pretty evil and vitriolic though. The song has a middle-section with a tension building drum beat after which a new melody is introduced. “Walls” has a driving, thrashy verse, the chorus, on the other hand, is melodic and feels almost laid back. The title track has blasty parts that are full of fury and venom as well as groovy, sinister sections. Mid-tempo section and melancholic melodies – they can serve as a springboard for following sonic attacks – are worked in as well. “The Wind Will Bring Them Horses” has a catchy, angular verse riff, and a pumped-up chorus with a driving, heavy groove. “This Knife Won’t Stay Clean Today” sets a slower pace, it’s a melancholic mid-tempo jam with a beautiful, soaring melody in the middle-section. “(A Tale of) Rust and Bones” is the last hard-hitting song on the B-side. It has ballsy Thrash riffs and blasty Black Metal parts, but there is also a playful, VOIVOD-esque groove worked into the song. The album closes with the slower, somber song “Light Dies Last”.

I enjoy “Cloud Collider,” I’ve jammed the hell out of it frankly. Their style just appeals to my taste: I love those dark vibes and the aggression. The songwriting is dynamic but doesn’t suffer from overwriting – the result are memorable songs and a nice flow of the album overall. You’ll find many excellent guitar leads throughout the songs and the drumming is on point. The production sounds a bit “industry standard” but otherwise there is nothing wrong with it. I’m feeling this one.

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

4 Star Rating

1. The Machine
2. Keine Angst
3. Walls
4. Cloud Collider
5. Forever Death
6. The Wind Brings Them Horses
7. No Stories Left
8. This Knife Won't Stay Clean Today
9. (The Taste of) Rust and Bone
10. Light Dies Last

Necroculto - Bass
Desecratör - Drums
Executor - Guitars
Sinner - Guitars
Infernal Destroyer – Vocals

Record Label: Metal Blade Records


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