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KATATONIA – The Fall Of Hearts
Release: May 20, 2016
By: Jordan Salfity
Style: Progressive Metal/Doom Metal
KATATONIA have undergone many lineup and stylistic changes in their career since forming in 1991. Starting off as a death/doom metal band on their first couple of releases, the band moved away from screamed vocals and towards more melodic and traditional heavy metal. Since then, they have continued to include a progressive element in their music, as seen in their last couple of releases. All the while, the two founding members, Jonas Renske and Anders Nystrom, have remained intact, leading the way into unexplored levels of emotion, darkness, and most importantly, beauty. Since Dead End Kings from 2012, the band released an acoustic reinterpretation of that album, a live acoustic album/DVD that took place inside of a church, and lost their lead guitarist and drummer. While some fans worried that this meant that KATATONIA had lost their way, diehard fans knew they had nothing to fear. 2016 saw the release of KATATONIA’s tenth studio album, The Fall Of Hearts, and this album will surly go down as one of the band’s best releases of their career, if not most unique and memorable. The album starts with Takeover, showing that the band did not miss a beat with all the lineup changes. From the progressive grooves of that song, to the upbeat melodic/power metal feel of Serein, to the beautiful ballad elements that are found in Old Hearts Fall, the album shows it’s diversity, and ability to flow through from style to style with an incredible amount of ease. The metal elements are there, the electronic elements are there, the keyboards provide sounds of strings, the drums are mixed perfectly and the fills really stand out, Jonas’s vocals are in the best shape of his career, and there is an addition of technical guitar solos thanks to newcomer Roger. This album is everything a KATATONIA fan could want, and for someone who is unfamiliar with the band, I would highly recommend this as a great starting point. This album is for anyone who is a fan of dark metal, and is definitely a contender for album of the year!