KARNAK - Melodies Of Sperm Composed

Karnak - Melodies Of Sperm Composed

10 songs
41:11 minutes
***** ***
Twelfth Planet


Italy is well known for its important progressive rock scene, only England had a one that was more interesting back in the Seventies. Because that fact is as good as forgotten now, it's quite surprising that a metal band looks back with pride on that part of history of their country, and why not?

Although Karnak count Area and Goblin among their influences, it must be stated that they owe as much to modern progressive rock as to the innovators of the death metal genre, which would be Atheist, Cynic and the late Pestilence.

The main ingredient is death metal of course, but Karnak add so many more influences that it's hard to compare them to any one band specifically. That's what you would call originality, I guess. The vocals are screamed, but rather in a high pitched way which remind a lot of some thrash metal bands of the late Eighties. The guitar playing is highly progressive, and there are a lot of complicated drum textures, to place the music somewhere in the leagues of over-proggies like Cynic and WatchTower. The whole picture is enhanced with atmospheric keyboard sounds. The cover artwork as well as the lyrics are rather disturbing, but together with music that's lightyears away from easy listening structures, that shouldn't surprise too much.

If I have one negative thing to point out, it's the fact that the listening experience is very interesting, but most of the songs have a very patchworky feeling to them, a risk many progressive bands are running. Only few songs keep you hooked, as there is no actual song feeling to the music. OK, it's complicated music, and it's probably not even meant to stick in your head after only a couple of listening sessions. If you think that most prog rock these days is just soft commercial crap, and are not deterred by thrash and death metal influences, then Melodies Of Sperm Composed might just be that album you're looking for. The album contains nine regular song, but there is an instrumental bonus track on the CD-Rom data track.

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