27 years, 13 albums…, and still going strong. Maurizio Iacono and Jean-François Dagenais have been doing this since the beginning, with Stéphane Barbe joining them 20 years ago when Maurizio swapped from bass to vocal duties. The newest member Olivier Beaudoin having now been with the band for 4 years and 3 albums already. Now with all this in mind, you know what you’re in store for with this new album: Good song writing, punchy tracks and plenty of aggression. It does not disappoint.
Opening track “Guillotine” takes mere seconds to set the mood and Olivier’s drumming is a constant sharp snapping of the snare coupled with insanely fast kicks matching the guitar riff speed.
Maurizio’s vocals are exceptionally clear and understandable the midpaced “Outsider” with its catchy chorus and bouncy riff.
“The Last Breath I’ll Take Is Yours” is a great title and an even better song by virtue of its venomous delivery and the way it changes pace between verse and chorus.
The first track I heard from the album was courtesy of the video clip for “Narcissist” which opens with throat singing followed by the drums building with accompaniment of a popping bass that keeps popping throughout, before Maurizio’s rather angry vocals kick in.
I have no idea why, but I find “Born To Kill And Destined To Die” to have a rather infectious groove to it, along with the only leads that Jean-François really gets stuck into on the album.
The initial blasting has me thinking “In Limbic Resonance” is going to be breakneck speed the entire time, but that is not the case, as even though the drums do tend to keep their frenetic pace for most of the song, the guitars breakdown into more melodic grooves to give the song a lot more depth.
“And Then I Saw Blood” is probably as close to a ballad as Kataklysm are going to get, with its slow but heavy guitar riff joined by a steady beat pounded on the drums.
The heavy popping of the bass behind the guitar riff on “What Doesn’t Break Doesn’t Heal” is as refreshing as the chorus is catchy and easy to sing along to.
Maintaining the slower pace, at least at first, “Bend The Arc, Cut The Cord” has Maurizio employing his raspier vocals to give the song a slightly nastier edge than it would have otherwise.
The album ends with “Achilles Heel”, that has both melodic and manic components to its composition and is a fitting conclusion to a really good album.
(8/10 Marco Gaminara)