Founded in 2001, Portuguese melodic death metal band KARNAK SETI, return with their third full length album titled The Distance That Made Us Cold. After a five year wait, will this album meet expectations?
The first track, The Bliss of Living introduces a menacing tone as we are met with syncopated beats by Luis Barreto and the exhilarating vocals from Luis Erre. The song beautifully progresses into an on beat rhythm with a melodious chorus, however the menacing tone creeps back in, ensuring the listener to want more.
KARNAK SETI enforce a crushing appearance in Quit, opening with muffled, ambiguous sounding guitars from Renato Ramos and Antonio Jesus, which then follows to a syncopated chord sequence, creating thrill for the listener and making it almost impossible not to move in time to the beat. This song leans more towards death than melodic death, as a melodious chorus is less prominent, however such energy is brought to the song with gnarly riffs throughout and thundering vocals, with a few breakdowns to keep you on your toes. The song ends with a sense of mystery, which is fitting to the song name, Quit, because we are left all of a sudden with string resonance.
KARNAK SETI delve deeper into the melodic routes and produce a sound with more underlying riffs and guitar and vocal harmonies in the seventh track – The Distance That Made Us Cold. A catchy and memorable chorus is brought to us with backing vocals that double the harsh vocals. The doubling of vocal styles really complements each other and shows a sophisticated sound. Blurred In The Distance is a beautiful song, from the dance like opening, to the chilled pauses with nothing but a slow pattern of notes on guitar and a echo exclaiming the lyrics “wake up” before entering the chorus. Despite all this, KARNAK SETI throw in a few pounding break downs to remind us where their ground lies within the heavy genre – brilliant. The album closes with Reload System and Claudio Aguiar delivers a punchy bass line which enriches the final sound with the guitars, vocals and drums and finishes the album in a good place.
Overall, The Distance That Made Us Cold is a great album. The contrasts between the gnarly and lighter tones are really well executed and keep the listener enthralled in the music. Adding something experimental could have made this album really stand out, however after each listen, you will find more aspects of the music to focus your attention towards. Influenced by the following Swedish icons, this album may appeal to fans of DARK TRANQUILITY, SOILWORK and IN FLAMES. KARNAK SETI are a band that would be welcomed to see tour the UK sometime in the near future.
The Distance That Made Us Cold is out now via self-release.
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