Recommended Aussie Band:Tamerlan Empire | Sydney Symphonic Black Metal | Listen

Album Reviews : KING – Reclaim the Darkness

By on August 26, 2016

king_reclaimReclaim the Darkness is the debut album from KING. The quality of this release is hardly surprising when you consider that the band features members from Blood Duster and Psycroptic, two of Australia’s finest extreme bands. But what is surprising is the musical style. KING’s music doesn’t share a lot of similarities to Blood Duster or Psycroptic but they are equally as impressive – their sound is probably best described as blackened folk metal, or blackened melodeath – think of a the best possible mix of elements from bands that range from Immortal & Moonsorrow to In Flames & Soilwork and you’re getting close. Its melodic and epic in nature, and from the very first notes of the first track I am sold – the production is crisp, the riffs and guitar melodies are memorable and vocals complement the arrangements particularly well.

The title track is the only track I had heard before getting my hands on the full album. As is the case on many of the tracks on the album, the Swedish melodeath influence is pretty strong on this track. I like the song a lot but I believe there are superior tracks on the album; a complement to the quality of the release. “Destination The Stars” & “Black North” are my top picks. The vocals are particularly venomous on these tracks and I really like the chord progressions and instrumentation on both of them.

The musicianship throughout is very impressive. David Hill’s guitars are tight and I appreciate his approach to lead guitar – crafting melodic passages which aid to enhance certain sections of the songs rather than playing guitar solos for guitar solo’s sake. Tony Forde’s vocals are really good – at times sounding like a corpse paint laden black metal demon, and sounding more akin to a traditional Swedish melodeath vocalist at others. Dave Haley is a monster player and I really enjoy his drumming on this release. His beats are varied and tasteful throughout the various grooves, and he manages to complement the guitar lines perfectly – adding moments of speed and technicality when required, but without ever overplaying or overpowering the arrangements. Legend.

All in all Reclaim the Darkness is a belter of an album and given it’s the bands debut its particularly impressive. Only time will tell whether KING can reach the heights of Blood Duster and Psycroptic, but I get the feeling that the strength of this band’s material can propel them to similar heights.

One of, if not the best Australian releases you will hear in 2016.

About

Chris is a long time metal enthusiast and advocate for Australian heavy music scene. Chris grew up in Perth, Western Australia and is a past member of modern melodeath act Let's Kill Uncle. Currently residing in London, UK.