martes, febrero 09, 2010

Surprises 2009: Kalisia - Cybion

Band: Kalisia
Album: Cybion (first album)
Genre: Progressive Melodeath
Country: France

CYBION is an anticipation concept-album. It is only composed of one epic piece. We strongly insist on this point: its structures and audio tracks are here to provide reference points to the listener, but CYBION must be considered as a one and only piece. It may only make sense in its entirety, exactly like a movie. Music and lyrics are very closely connected, developing atmospheres trying to provoke various emotions to the listener (oppression, happiness...), proposing (and not imposing) him a succession of pictures and feelings corresponding as closely as possible to the development of the story (but everyone is free to interpret it in a different way… as each person feels music in a different way). A million miles away from the idea of an easy-listening or disposable music, like those records you listen to once or twice before they get lost and dusty on a shelf (if they were even bought...), this piece can be difficult to understand at first, but will reveal itself time after time to those who’ll strive to listen carefully, and will always surprise them, even after dozens of listening.

A universal language
In order to provide more credibility, weight but also more poetry to the language imposed by the League, another genuine language called Kal was created for this record. Far from being just a simple translation of French or English with different words, this articulated language possesses its own grammar, semantic and etymology, and its calligraphy is also unique. Kal results from the study of different living, dead or imaginary languages such as Sanskrit, Latin, English, Arabic, Greek, German, Japanese, and even Quenya and Tengwar. It required, its creator Brett Caldas-Lima acknowledges, "a totally stupid amount of working hours in regard to the few times it is used".

Epic. It's all I could say about this project worked for years (their previous demo was released 15 years ago!). I dont mind so much about concept albums or about lyrics, so I will go straight to what interest me the most: the music. Cybion was thought to be just like one song divided in several parts, each one thought to mark a different feeling in the listener. The result is a really varied album where we can find many genres, from power metal, to death metal, to industrial, some jazz/classical interludes, some opera choirs.. all surrounding the main one: progressive metal with a harsh touch. It could be just another one of those progressive melodeath releases of another band copying Opeth/Dream Theater, but this album is enough original, with good riffs and melodies and you can feel there was so much effort and work in it.

1. Introduction / Domination / 01:49
2. Reception / Translation / 02:00
3. Union / Construction / 03:24
4. Declaration / Revolution / 02:41
5. Division / Integration / 03:52
6. Fusion / Rebellion / 05:41
7. Violation / Condemnation / 03:34
8. Education / Deification / 05:04
9. Isolation / Liberation / 03:39
10. Destination / Alteration / 03:06
11. Damnation / Seclusion / 05:09
12. Illusion / Desperation / 02:06
13. Resolution / Protection / 04:08
14. Reconstruction / Intrusion / 02:03
15. Confrontation / Communication / 03:23
16. Activation / Production / 02:54
17. Confusion / Resurrection / 03:09
18. Realisation / Penetration / 03:52
19. Disconnection / Comprehension / 05:29
20. Salvation / Connection / 03:02

Total playing time 01:10:05

The link provided serves just as promotional source. The aim is letting know rookie, new or unknown bands with few resources that try to expand their music. Buy the originals if you like them! Help good bands to grow!

Surprises 2009: Karlahan - A Portrait of Life

Band: Karlahan
Album: A Portrait of Life (first album)
Genre: Sympho-Folk Melodic Death Metal
Country: Spain

Karlahan started in 2006, with a different drummer (Victor Marín) and a synth player (Ivó Castells). In 2008, Aleix Valverde took over the role as drummer and Ivo also left in 2008 due to the increasing complexity of the orchestrations.
Karlahan released a short demo called "Twilight" in 2007 with just two songs. After this release, they started playing gigs in Barcelona and surroundings and they even played at the Helion Festival in Munich, Germany. It wasn't until the 1rst of October of 2009 that they released their first album under the name of "A Portrait of Life". It was totally self-produced, and it recieved very good critics by the international audience.

In the last 20? years I could rarely say that I have found a nice surprise in relation with spanish music. This time, the band from Barcelona, Karlahan, have gained my favour with a not so common metal style in this land. They are playing a kind of Sympho-Folk Melodeath in the vein of Equilibrium. I'm sure with a better production and more support, they can make a great next album. The main bad point I find is in this "A Portrait of Life" is the lenght: 29 minutes included an intro of 3... the album finishes too fast.
Let's hope things can start changing in Spain because many of the spanish bands that are (and always were) known between metal public dont deserve that status at all under my point of view.
An interesting band to follow.

1. A Portrait of Life / 03:28
2. Remnant / 05:38
3. The Harvest / 04:35
4. Involution / 06:49
5. Twilight / 04:53
6. Reverie / 04:51

Total playing time - 29:24

The link provided serves just as promotional source. The aim is letting know rookie, new or unknown bands with few resources that try to expand their music. Buy the originals if you like them! Help good bands to grow!