Whenever you see that a band is from France you usually know that whatever it is they have written is going to be off the wall, curious and often bizarre, particularly in extreme metal, as is the case with Kloct’s fourth full length which teems with atypical arrangements, freakish riffing styles and deviant malignancy. Launching with the corrosive riffing of “Time For A Change” that outlandishness isn’t immediately apparent but when you listen closely the innumerable riffing changes, tonal dexterity and morphing melodies is exactly what I’ve suggested. The incorporation of clean vocal elements are supremely delivered possessing an inherent wispy charm that threads through the release too.

The bleak beat and desolate riff that starts ‘Months Of Travel’ is steeped in atmospheric melancholy as the song channels morose energy down anguish riddled trails. As the songs develops the thrust into more upbeat realms offers a fine contrast before the surging speed. Continuing the plunging solemnity is “A New Home” with its barren riff coursing within the background of the speedier approach before reducing smoothly to a crawling gloominess. I particularly liked “I” partly because its riff and aura is like Imperium Dekadenz, who I adore, but also because the song offers a myriad of hooks and sublime melodies. Added to that the harsh and clean vocals alternation is exquisitely situated as the song reeks of oblique lugubriousness.

As the album progresses there feels to be an increasing swirl of intensity where a slow foreboding depression is felt on “Embrace The Elements” before its abrupt escalation to the blast beat contrasting schizophrenically as it again plummets into a slower piece of sinister potency. “Solitude Of The Hermit” again is saturated in that grief stricken ethos where the slow riffing base is backed by grisly dense vocals that capture the atmosphere of suffocating strangulation. The intermittent blast is unexpected as the avant-garde texture is rampant here, especially when the speed catapults into blasting ferocity. With sound effects and an atmospheric backing “Watching At The Great Forest” is powerful as a serene opening is obliterated for a half blasted shift in intensity. The riff is extremely catchy and again drenched in emotion as the fantastic shift to double bass is immense and overtly catchy that leaves “A Wolf, A Deer And A Howl” to finish this impressive release. The percussive strains are purely ambient and indeed this closer leaves you with the thought that Kloct are anything but your normal black metal act preferring to end the album with tranquillity and ataraxia.

(8.5/10 Martin Harris)