Dying In A Desert - 2004 - Manitou
Seeds Of Pain - 2005 - Manitou

Kragens image
S= Demon Eyes, Lynx>>RENAUD ESPECHE
G= Ludwig Laperche - Strutters, Thorium>>CEDRIC SELLIER - Medusa, Xtrunk>>GILLES GIACHINO>>Medua, Xtrunk
D= Tribal, Dirty Side, Slam, Ace>>OLIVIER GAVELLE

Cedric Sellier and Ludwig Laperche, who were later joined later by vocalist Renaud Espeche, formed Kragens - named after fictitious sea monsters) in late 2000. Espeche was the drummer in Demon Eyes in the '80s.
The band soon lost bassist Laurent Pottentier and drummer Jean Michel Scali however. New members, Denis Malek and Olivier Gavell, soon joined and the band gigged locally as a cover band. A self-titled demo was also recorded in 2001. The group obtained a contract in France with Manitou/Thundering and recorded its debut for 2004. Kragens recorded the second album Seeds Of Pain in April and May 2005, and had it mixed by Tue Madsen in Denmark. Through a connection with Grave Digger’s Chris Boltendahl the group also signed with Locomotive Music for the world outside France. The album was released on the 29th of August 2005. Ludwig Laperche is soon replaced by Gilles Giachino. The band began working on its third album.


It seems that Locomotive Records has all of a sudden hit the real metal gravy train. The end of 2005 has brought a couple of above average releases from this, hitherto underwhelming, record company. Kragens is an interesting heavy/thrash metal band with enough of a solid footing to justify its existence and enough additional elements woven into its fabric to keep the metal maniac masses entertained. The solid footing is not one-hundred percent though. The band has one too many disparate elements and sounds as if things may completely gel an album down the road. Key to band is the combination of heaviness and flexibility. Keeping it constantly extreme, the Frenchmen nonetheless incorporate heavy and thrash metal, progressive touches, soulful or dazzling guitar solos and slower parts in effect keeping the listener guessing. This is why the band’s closest comparison must be Nevermore. Other names whose names might pop up here and there are old Testament and The Duskfall. Key to the band’s multi-faceted approach is singer Renaud whose voice, while normally high-pitched, proves itself flexible and capable of delivering different emotions. The sole weak song in the whole melee is the underwhelming Over The Deadline; otherwise Seeds Of Pain is packed with riffs and machine gun rhythms with lyrics that are, at least, partly political. Now can someone explain why song number five is entitled I Choo To Die? - Ali “The Metallian”