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Sarcator - Alkahest Award winner

by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 22 November 2022, 8:32 AM

To fans of Metal, an old and wise saying: listen to all the albums you can, because in a moment, from one release that you’re not expecting, something great can come. As writers, sometimes we find precious gems in the flood of releases that are presented each day. And the Swedish quartet SARCATOR (a combination between the names of Brazilian Black/Death Metal pioneer SARCÓFAGO and German Thrash Metal leader KREATOR) really surprises a lot with “Alkahest”. The band focus their efforts on creating a form of Old School Thrash/Black Metal that uses elements of Death Metal (check it on the blast beats of the drums shown on “Ascend”), and even of Heavy Metal and Hard Rock (the influences of MOTÖRHEAD and JUDAS PRIEST arising in some moments, as can be heard on the crude and hooking melodies of “Perdition’s Hand”).

It’s not something moldy or that lies on models eroded by time, but it’s furious, alive and aggressive, sharp as a blade and full of a young and savage energy. It’s extremely hooking in the way it is, so be prepared to become a fan of their music for sure! The production is focused on a ‘dry’ sonority that allows things to be understood easily. But be prepared, because it improves the band’s aggressive instrumental tunes, and it’s heavy and brutal, but in a form that’s easy to be understood by anyone. The quartet is still on its ‘maturing age’, or in other words, is still growing and shaping its musical efforts. But even in this way, “Alkahest” is an excellent and amazing release.

“Ascend” is a furious and massive Thrash/Death Metal song based on fast tempos and a brutal work created by bass guitar and drums (very good technical approach, but always in a compact and solid approach). On “Perdition’s Hand”, the band revisits its Hard Rock/Heavy Metal influences, in a way where 80’s Metal and Punk Rock influences arise (and what great work on the guitar riffs and solos). One can check some Hard Rock arrangements on the guitars during the fast assault of “Grave Maggot Future” (again, influences of MOTÖRHEAD and AC/DC can be detected), but always with the usual Swedish melodic sense. The long and brutal “Dreameater” begins with a disturbing and darkened intro, but soon slow paced tempos and nasty ambiences arises, allowing a very good and expressive work of the vocals (and what lovely and melodic guitar leads).

Another melodic intro based on clean guitar is presented on “The Long Lost”, just a preparation for a Thrash/Death Metal song with aggressiveness shaped by a melodic embodiment created by the guitars and rhythmic session. And full of contrasting tempos is “He Who Comes from the Dark”, with a good technical work and charming Thrash/Black Metal hooks; and these same elements can be heard on “Devil Sun” (but with melodies being defined in a better form). “Sorrow’s Verse” is an instrumental where the band takes the chance of showing more of its influences, becoming a multi-faced moment of the album, with technical care and excellent arrangements. And closing, another moment filled with shifts and contrasts, “Alkahest”, and it’s able to make you shake your heads as Hell due its hooks and melodies (but pay attention to some brutal parts and even introspective moments).

SARCATOR is really an amazing act, and “Alkahest” is wonderful release, that kind of album that you hear once and let the ‘repeat’ option turned on. Oh, by the way, Metal seems a family inheritance, because Mateo is the son of Marko Tervonen, the guitarist of THE CROWN (a band that I followed since “Eternal Death” days, one of the albums that I heard the most during my life). From father to son, Metal makes the world a better place, indeed.

Songwriting: 10
Musicianship: 10
Memorability: 10
Production: 9

5 Star Rating

1. Ascend
2. Perdition’s Hand
3. Grave Maggot Future
4. Dreameater
5. The Long Lost
6. He Who Comes from the Dark
7. Devil Sun
8. Sorrow’s Verse
9. Alkahest
Mateo Tervonen - Vocals, Lead Guitars
Emil Eriksson - Rhythm Guitar, Backing Vocals
Felix Lindkvist - Bass, Backing Vocals
Jesper Rosén - Drums
Record Label: Black Lion Records


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Edited 03 December 2022

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