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  VOICE OF THE SOUL
'Catacombs'
(Hells Hammer/Transcending Obscurity)


jools green

Jools Green



voice of the soul

'Catacombs', the debut full length release from Dubai based, progressive death Metal trio Voice Of The Soul, formed in 2007 by the then 17 year-old Kareem Chehayeb and 16 year-old Monish Shringi who were, at the time, based in Kuwait.

The duo recorded three EP's, 'Winds Of Apprehension' in 2009, 2010s 'Eyes Of Deceit' and in 2011 'Into Oblivion', becoming a trio with the addition of Rudy Fares on drums for the recording of this debut full length album.

'Catacombs' is a well composed, nine track offering that spans forty-four minutes, featuring some great harsh vocals that manifest as a deep rasping growl with high level of varied and well executed guitar and drum work throughout. Beginning with 'Desolation', a brief haunting guitar led instrumental intro that flows nicely into 'Perpetual Deception', with its swift soaring opener, heavily embellished with blasting drum work, then a poignant pause making the ensuing vocals all the more powerful.

A dramatic, very well phrased track with a great closing solo. The only tiny issue was with the cleans, something know I am irritatingly fussy about, which slightly lacked strength and sounded hesitant, particularly when set against the powerful harsh vocals; otherwise a great track.

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'Pendulum' has a strong opener, great midpoint build and a good technical edge to the second half guitars. I really liked the dramatic mix of spoken vocals, screaming guitar and blasting drum work at the close. The mood changes completely for 'Quarantine', the opener is more haunting and reflective, the over laid pummelling drum work sets things up for the harsh vocals which sit well alongside the haunting keyboard element, that subtle yet effective technical aspect to the guitars returns again, just before midway, after which the haunting melodic mood resumes, ending on a gentle, reflective guitar led drop-away and fade out.

'Cold Rupture' also has a dramatic sombre mood to the opener which continues across the length of the track, initially piano led, with clean vocals again which, although they were better here, still lack something, however the arrival of the harsh growls made up for that shortfall, the tempo and mood elevates towards the close before a final fade out while 'The Mist 'is an atmospheric, piano led instrumental of unexpectedly tranquil proportions, a perfect oasis before the arrival of 'Perdition' which has a superb hypnotic repeat riff with a wonderfully diabolical feel to it, a tempo that ebbs and flow in waves and excellent midpoint guitar work, the harsh vocals adding the necessary brutal edge, particularly the latter part vocal roar that really makes the hair on the back of your neck stand on end.

voice of the soul

'Defiled' with its dirty edged riffs and a great bass work which sits so well with the vocals, is a superb track with a very addictive and memorable groove opening with a fabulous solo towards the end. Final track, 'Images Subside' begins on a slower almost doom like opener, the cleans return, however they are much better here and sit well within the more melodic reflective mood that the track opens out to, midway they are superseded by a superb reflective guitar segment that dominates beautifully almost all of the second half of the track making a superb end to the release.

Also worth a mention is the Interesting artwork which is suggestive of a hidden meaning and your personal outlook may well reflect how you interpret the imagery. 'Catacombs' was originally digitally released in UAE in September 2014 and will now see an official physical release in Europe distributed via Hells Hammer and in India distributed via Transcending Obscurity; a great debut full length.




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25.3.15













 


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