>> Children of the void <<
release date: 26/05/2017
When epic melodies meet brutal screams, you know you’re listening to Karkaos
In just a few days the time has come to let the curtain fall and reveal their new album “Children of the Void” on May 26th. Among that, they present their new line up which includes, along the long-time members Vincent Harnois, Sebastien Belanger-Lapierre and Samael Pelletier, the new girl on drums Justine Ethier, who is well-known from Blackguard and really kicks asses on that CD, and of course singer, screamer and perfect front-lady Viky Boyer who is one of the best young talents I ever met in my life. Now these five awesome people come up with an epic, bombastic and melodic metal album which easily can jump into the top 5 of metal releases in 2017.
Starting with a lot of drama, they gave us a short melancholic intro called “Babel” where they include a piano and build up the pressure. You can feel how you want to finally listen to the first chords and, if you haven’t before, to hear Viky sing. And the intro doesn’t promise too much because the changeover from the intro to the first full length song “Skymaster” is loud but fits perfectly. For people who enjoy the sound of epic guitar riffs together with nice rhythms, that will be the most awesome song from the whole record. Next to Viky’s growls and a pretty, clear voice you get an instrumental part with a guitar solo which melts the metal heart. With a powerful “hey” you get introduced to their already published song “Kollossós”, for which they also released their first official music video with the new line up. In that song, Viky uses her growls not that much, just a little bit in between which gives you a good feeling. Her clear vocals are really special but in a positive way. Here you can also hear the first guest musician, Morgan Lander of Kittie, an all-female band from Canada. Because of the choir you can hear far away in the background, it gives you the feeling of being excited to hear more. The guitars are not rhythmic until the middle where a break cuts the song into pieces. It continues more melodic until it stops slowly with a long guitar tune. For a long-time fan of Karkaos the next song was a moment where you realized how much Viky’s voice and technic has improved in the past months. “Let The Curtain Fall” is the first song they re-recorded for a special show in Montreal and where they want to introduce the new girl on the micro to their fans. If you are used to the YouTube version, you have to pinch yourself. It’s so different but in a good way. The change between clean vocals and growls are so fast that it is fascinating. A special is also this kind of a choir and a whining from a girl which sounds far away at the end of the song. Going on, the song further acts aggressive but melodic.
A good rhythm they present in “Pale”, the most powerful and epic song of the record. It gives you a good feeling when you listen to it and it is stuck in your head from the very first tune. Finally, a song where the song is supported by the guitars and not the other way around. I’m impressed how good that album can be because we are just listening to song number 5 from 12. Within the song, you have another choir which gives the song the final touch to be my favorite of “Children of the Void”, not only because it is an ear catcher. If I compared the next song to the others I’ve already listened to, I would say it starts a bit more quiet, but with a growl part they try to convince the listener their title song is also heavy. Again, they use an epic guitar solo and Viky’s clear voice is soft and reminds me directly of Vicky of The Agonist. The drums by Justine are clearly audible and she is in her best form. To end that song up, they use a keyboard and their already used instruments to let the song slowly fade.
Drama, that’s the first you hear because of the soft sound and the use of a tambourine. It gets faster and faster until it comes to the point where heavy instruments start playing and Viky growls as well. ”Reverie” is something you don’t expect at the beginning. Not that increase of melodies and not the vocals as well. From the first tune, you expect a very deep and sad ballad but you get a powerful melodic death metal song with a mixture of some whispered spoken words and a choir in the background. Also, the instruments get their chance to shine through the dark growls and screams of the young metal girl.
Starting song number 9 with a funny name “Where The Mushrooms Grow” and a piano until you clearly hear drums and a guitar proximate before a deep grunt comes out of her mouth. Before you can enjoy the full length of the song with their awesome melody you are sitting there asking yourself why she sings about where the mushrooms grow. In between heavy growls and lovely clear sounds, you can dream while a violin is playing and another guitar solo pops up but as soon as Viky starts singing again, you just enjoy the song so much that you stop thinking about the why behind the song. A long guitar shred guides us to the next song which directly starts heavy with no beat in the instruments which makes “Lightbearer” an interesting song. Still a mix between growls and clean vocals and instruments which are mixed discretionarily. If it fits the song, it is okay to do it like that but most of the time it sounds just like noise. Here that’s different, it fits fantastically and it sounds great. Listening to that song makes your body want to move, headbang, mosh and just party with them, enjoying every single tune so much. Thinking of “The Beast”, I don’t know why I think about Alissa White-Gluz of Arch Enemy. Maybe because Viky’s growls sound exactly like hers in that song and she mostly uses that kind of voice in the song, or maybe because Alissa is called “Queen Beast” on social media. Fans of Alissa’s voice or dark death metal growls in general will love that song but even if not, when she is whispers in between the words, the song catches your heart. Justine highlights Viky’s whispering with a hit on the cymbals. The dramatic end of the song gives you the best feeling for the last song “Bound by Stars”, which has an intro where Viky speaks in German. She is not a native speaker but you almost can’t hear an accent, bravo girl, you nailed it! It is the most symphonic song of the album where she just uses her clean voice. It sounds like a heavy metal ballad and she has another guest with her on the album. The choir is done by nobody less than the talented and amazing Lindsay Schoolcraft. With the longest song on the record, they present themselves from their best part including keys, and the drums are again clearly audible which makes it a powerful, epic song with nice riffs and good melodies. The lyrics are sad but the song in general is different than the others but great anyway.
Again, Canada proved that they have one of the best metal scenes worldwide. Sadly, some of Canada’s best bands are hidden gems if you are from Europe but they don’t need to hide themselves in the wide landscape of the country of ice hockey. Nor only did they kick the asses of the Europeans during the ice hockey world championship, they also kick the asses of most of our European melodic death metal bands. I’m sure we will hear and see a lot about Karkaos in the future because they are not only one of the best bands I know, they also have talent and potential to play which they established with their new record “Children of the Void”. If you once start listening to them, you will become addicted, whether you want it or not.
I recommend giving it a try, not only if you are a fan of epic melodic death metal with two awesome ladies and three cool guys. But be careful, that album needs a warn sign because it is addictive from the first tune.