|Review: Keep of Kalessin - Armada|
Label: Tabu Recordings
Year released: 2006
Genre: Black Metal
Review online: June 9, 2006
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Rated 3.5/5 (70%) (14 Votes)
Keep Of Kalessin get a lot of good press, seemingly able to modernize their Black Metal sound while still getting cred with the purists and not coming off as sellouts – not an easy balancing act. I have never gotten around to this band before now, and while this is a fine album, it isn't as great as I'd been led to believe.
If you need a touchstone for KoK's sound, start with this: Emperor. That's pretty much it. This band plays so close to Anthems-era Emperor that it definitely hits the same spot. Now KoK are not nearly as complex as Emperor, and not as groundbreaking or original, but the similarity is too much to ignore. The synths are not used as extensively as they were by Ihshan and the boys, but they are present. Overall KoK play a fast, enjoyable brew of technical Black Metal with touches of Death, and a dash here and there of more melodic passages to break things up. Armada is fast and fun, but not really that memorable afterwards. Fans of other bands of this type, like The Legion or Marduk, will enjoy this just fine, and if you loved Emperor's middle period, then this will definitely do it for you. Just don't believe all the hype and expect this to be some kind of genre-defining masterpiece. KoK are good, but they are not the best band out there.
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