Rating:
8.0
Catamenia - Location:COLD
8 September 2006


01. Tribe Of Eternity
02. Gallery Of Fear
03. Coldbound
04. Tuhat Vuotta
05. Closed Gates Of Hope
06. Zero Gravity
07. Location:COLD
08. The Day When The Sun Faded Away
09. Expect No Mercy
10. I Wanna Be Somebody [W.A.S.P. cover]


When first looking into Catamenia, I expected another run of the mill "Extreme Power Metal" bands that seem to be popping up everywhere lately, especially coming out of Finland, but I couldn't have been more wrong.

Everything about the album fits together perfectly; the completely original cover art of some vicious looking wolves with a cold looking midnight background, and the title "Location: COLD" both fit the vicious, cold, yet at the same time heroic sounding music.
Unlike a lot of keyboard involved metal, the keyboards are not prominent and on top of the other instruments, instead they lie underneath the guitars, creating a more atmospheric feel until the breaks when they pretty much stand alone (or on some intros); this makes the music sound like its being played by one cohesive unit rather than a bunch of musicians trying to get time in the spotlight. The vocals are also what makes this album stand out for me; the growls are very vicious and consistent, balanced out with parts of songs with clean vocals, which tend to sound a little cheesy at times but are still a good addition to the music. The vocals reach their most memorable moment in "Closed Gates Of Hope" when the harsh screams and the clean vocals are layered together, creating a beautiful sound.

Also, do not let the bands title of "Black Metal" fool you, this album is far from conventional black metal, the guitars have there own unmistakable sound that seems to take black metal speed and fuse it with both thrash & power metal sounding riffs. In fact no songs have a purely black metal sound throughout the entire track, making it hard to get bored of this album. For example, the title track has perfectly executed transitions from an epic power metal type sound which suddenly drops into a fast-as-hell black metal song with blast beats and all. The track "The Day When The Sun Faded Away" is probably the album's climax musically, every instrument's individual riffs seem to both stand out yet flow together perfectly at the same time. As icing on the cake, the closing track on the album is a frantic cover of the W.A.S.P. song "I Wanna Be Somebody" which seems to be tailor made for this band.

I only have two notable problems with this album. The first is simply that the recording quality on the vocals is inconsistent; in some parts the vocals are perfectly balanced with the rest of the music but at other times it seems like the vocals are being drowned out, and not in a fade-out effect either, just as if someone accidentally set the volume on the vocal mic a few notches too low. The second problem is that by the end of the album it seems they ran out of ideas, they start to repeat themselves. I have owned this album for about 2 or 3 months and have listened to it at least once a week and I still have a hard time telling certain songs apart.

Overall this is a fantastic album from a greatly underrated band, and after an album like this it's a crime they aren't more widely acknowledged throughout the metal community.

Performance: 9
Songwriting: 7
Originality: 8
Production: 8


Band profile: Catamenia
Album: Location:COLD


 


written by Doc Godin | 16.04.2007


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.



Comments

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Katatronik - 16.04.2007 at 13:07  
I agree with you, great review man!
I'd give the same rating, it's a very good album, though not amazing...
White Winter Sun - 16.04.2007 at 18:45  
Great review and agree with you on vocals. They are sometimes little perceptible. But it stay a good album.
Sunioj - 16.04.2007 at 19:55  
I agree in terms of metal, they are underrated, but in BM its the contrary. Haha, about the part on the unbalanced sound, its not a surprise since they are always drunk!

I want to get this album, but Ive heard that its same old Catamenia. But will do.
BestMetalstormer - 18.04.2007 at 18:06  
I would give it as 8.1 or 8.2, though not big different mark. Indeed agree this album worth getting
AnarChrist - 20.04.2007 at 14:38  
maybe the problem with vocals is that there are 2 different vocalists doing the harsh vocal parts,has something to do with the original singer's throat injury...
tulkas - 08.05.2007 at 05:29  
i've just heard the whole location:cold song (i actually watched the video), and the samples they have on their myspace site and judging from that it sounds really good. the, after reading the review, I guess it's really worth listening to it very well.
Lord_Regnier - 18.04.2009 at 17:17  
Probably my favorite Catamenia album. Lots of speed, lots of great riffs, lots of blasting parts. A fast and aggressive album for this band, yet it retains the melodic touch.
Uirapuru - 20.04.2009 at 19:08  
Well... it can be said that this work is almost not black metal.

They sure have some blackened remnants, but songs like ''Coldbound'' and ''The Day When The Sun Faded Away'' are not even close to it. Location:COLD and ''Expect no Mercy'' presents better the black metal parts.

This album gets a close 2nd place in the Catamenia best albuns. ''Winternight Tragedies'' is the absolute. But I really liked this album, the clean vocals, the constant power-like riffs, the speed and the calculated drum work. Good album.
Vitriolic Hate - 07.12.2009 at 21:20  
''The track "The Day When The Sun Faded Away" is probably the album's climax musically, every instrument's individual riffs seem to both stand out yet flow together perfectly at the same time.''

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