Kataklysm: More than a decade of darkness

Ein Artikel von Souleraser vom 09.01.2004 (27335 mal gelesen)
Kataklysm Logo

1991 - 1995

Death Gate Cycle of Reincarnation Cover
While somewhere in sunny California bands like CANNIBAL CORPSE, MORBID ANGEL, DEATH, OBITUARY or DEICIDE tried to create the most extreme sounds possible, a few angry young men in cold Canada started off for the same reason.
And just to get things straight: 'Kataklysm' describes the theory of a global natural disaster powerful enough to eradicate absolutely every sign of life from the planet and to give it the chance to start over again. Everyone who ever listened to any song from KATAKLYSM simply must admit these guys do one hell of a job to prove their chosen name is true.
In 1992 KATAKLYSM released a demo called "Death Gate Cycle of Reincarnation" which achieved a reputation perfectly described by the word "classic" and which brought our young Canadians a record deal with Germany's "Nuclear Blast".

Mystical Gate of Reincarnation Cover
The deal was signed in 1993 and the band released "The Mystical Gate of Reincarnation".
The music was still rather an expression of uncontrolled hatred and anger, songs of chaos and destruction, often without a song-structure that would open itself up to the listeners. Nevertheless KATAKLYSM were able to impress critics as well as fans in those days a bit.

1995 was the year when KATAKLYSM released their first longplayer and named it "Sorcery". The record strengthened a new musical genre, invented by KATAKLYSM themselves: The so called "Northern Hyperblast".
KATAKLYSM began to have smart lyrics, mystical stories and extreme powerful guitar- and bassplay.
After the release, KATAKLYSM toured Europe together with other gods of extreme metal like SINISTER, CATHEDRAL, FLESHCRAWL, DEICIDE or BRUTAL TRUTH.
KATAKLYSM made one thing clear in those days: A strong will to be THE ultimate death metal band of all and that they were one of the bands to be reckon with.

1996 - 1999

Temple of Knowledge - Cover
In 1996 KATAKLYSM started another attack towards the world with their second full length album "Temple of Knowledge". 'The Awakener' is not just one of the better songs on that album but also the song the band did their first videoclip for.
As a result KATAKLYSM were sent on their first headliner tour which led to the live album "Northern Hyperblast Live", a limited edition CD.
One of the 'golden rules' in the music business is that a band's 3rd album will decide about the career of the band. Well, luckily KATAKLYSM seemed to be the exception from the rule. Their 3rd album, "Victims of this fallen world", an album with high-explosive-contents like social criticism etc. divided the groups of fans and journalists. On the one hand, the album showed a lot of diversity and conquered new territory for the band, on the other hand many people felt disturbed by the elements of Hardcore that were used. No matter what side one was on, "Temple of Knowledge" had set a level "Victims of this fallen world" just could not reach.
A remarkable sidenote: Both of these releases that could not fulfill the high KATAKLYSM-standards, "Northern Hyperblast Live" and "Victims of this fallen world" were published by HYPNOTIC Records, not by NUCLEAR BLAST.

2000 - 2003

The Prophecy (Stigmata of the Immaculate) - Cover
Well, the hype about 2000 must have pissed everyone and while the disappointment was big because nothing changed for most people, the year 2000 definitely was the beginning of a new era for KATAKLYSM. They returned to Nuclear Blast and released "The Prophecy (Stigmata of the Immaculate)". This album was better than anything they had done before. With big steps it marched towards the perfect synthesis of incredibly brutal tunes and well-written and well-structured songs together with really smart lyrics and clever stories.
Another remarkable sidenote: The opener, '1999-6661-2000', uses a spoken intro which was also the intro for the movie "Dark City". This intro really creates the perfect atmosphere for the songs to come. Perhaps because the movie it was taken from could be a KATAKLYSM-videoclip also, dark and pretty morbid.

Epic (The Poetry of War) - Cover
No 12 months later, KATAKLYSM added another chapter to their storybook of success. "Epic (The Poetry of War)" was the output of 2001 and it showed progress comparing the songs to the ones of "The Prophecy".
While improving their abilities, KATAKLYSM got lost here and simply wanted too much. The songs of "Epic" are pretty much that: Too epic, too complex compared to the older stuff. It is not a bad album, it just did not reach the same level as it's predecessor did. Nevertheless, it is way better than all other KATAKLYSM-albums so far.

Shadows and Dust
2002 brought a new KATAKLYSM-output. Everyone was waiting and excited if KATAKLYSM would be able to raise their own standards even more.
The album was called "Shadows and Dust" and yes, it topped all expectations. This album showed KATAKLYSM at their very best. Songs like 'Face the Face of War', 'Years of Enlightment // Decades in Darkness', 'Where the enemy sleeps' and all the others simply are made for eternity. These songs created a new level of perfect Death Metal, not just for KATAKLYSM, but for the whole Death Metal-scene.

One more remarkable sidenote: KATAKLYSM worked together with the same producer on every recording they did, from the first demo until "Shadows and Dust". And let's face it: Jean-Francois Dagenais did a very good job all the time and his merits about the KATAKLYSM-sound should never be forgotten.


The european Release-date for the upcoming album "Serenity in Fire" will be 2004-03-08. The expectations are higher than ever before. But would anyone seriously expect KATAKLYSM to disappoint their fans or themselves?


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