SATARIEL - HYDRA - CANDLELIGHT
Hydra started well. Some metal riffing, some effective and aggressive singing, guitars”¦ it was all going so well. Several listens later though the CD is anything but.
Hydra feels like the kind of product that might have been designed by a marketing committee for a bunch of record company executives themselves straight out of business school. All form(s) and no content, this album is a jumbled mess and mix of different styles created to cover all angles, but not doing anything effectively. The idea might be a brilliant example of terrible groupthink, but the mix is terrible. Hydra is the kind of album that would make a heavy metal fan sick were it in fact not so insignificant.
As you might have surmised, the rest of the album is part Soilwork, part a song with just female vocals and percussion, part vocal experimentation to the accompaniment of keyboards, part '60s cabaret and part growling over acoustic guitar.
Satariel 2006 is the type of band that will be praised to no end by the usual array of anti-metal metal reviewers, and loathed by any metal fan with any modicum of self-respect. - Ali “The Metallian”
SATARIEL - CHIFRA - PULVERISED
It goes without saying that most true metal fans dislike clean singing in extreme bands especially when mixed with aggressive vocals. Satariel here manages to put in a very impressive instance of the two styles working in tandem. The voice of Pär Johansson is versatile, emotional and powerful in every style he deploys. This is not the reason fro beginning the review highlighting the vocals however. Fact is, the first few listens preceded this writer checking the line-up and the names of the band’s members. Pär Johansson, who sings for Satariel, is a dead-ringer for the long-lost Candlemass singer Johan Langquist. Since the latter man ruled and graced Candlemass’ Epicus Doomicus Metallicus opus this four-song EP was quite a find. Of course, the two are not the same, but the similarity in voice and tonality remains. Anyone seeking a long-lost brother in Sweden?
One cannot tell why the band and Pulverised Records have opted for an EP (and a video for the song Hogtied Angel) instead of a full-length in the day and age of declining sales, but Chifra is worth buying regardless even if the group’s music is devoid of any leads or guitar soloing. The band’s heavy metal attack-gone-aggro, the simple, but effective riffs and beats and intriguing lyrics are a metallic pleasure. The vocals kill too. Did someone already mention that? - Ali “The Metallian”