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Leif Edling is the kind of musician that will never let me down. Meaning absolutely never, not in a zillion years or a billion more. And although his game is never to be changed, meaning heaviest doom metal, he has a way of making it sound always interesting and nothing near repetitive or boring whatsoever. The debut album of Krux contains no real surprises of Edling fans, provided that you are not one of those guys wailing about the absence of Messiah or about how "From the 13th Sun" is the weakest Candlemass album-say that to my face, and I'll tear you in half.
"Krux" is nothing more and nothing less than a perfect doom metal album, created by the guy who invented doom metal as we know it today. Nothing can go wrong when Leif's in charge-and it does not go wrong indeed. The sound is thick, heavy and crushing on your head like a wall tumbling down. Mats Leven (also Abstrakt Algebra) is one of the best session vocalists you can find out there, and he proves why he is the top of any musician's shortlist. He is emotive, passionate, and he's giving the songs a touch of 70's rock, that is so welcome. Stjarnvind and Sandstrom (Entombed) play their parts perfectly, even though Sandstrom is playing guitar (he played bass for Entombed at the time). Akesson is great too-some guest soloing on a couple of songs.
If I was to highlight some songs, I'd pick "Enigma Ezb", "Popocatepetl", "Krux" and "Lunochod"-especially the last one is so impressively interesting throughout its 12 minutes, with all the spacey effects creating a magnificent atmosphere. But take my word for it, this is a great album, one of the greatest doom albums of the last years, meaning at least a decade. If you liked "...13th Sun", you're sure to love this one too. If you did not like it, maybe you should give it another try. I mean, really.
Krux, the “side-project” of Swedish doom-master Leif Edling created with two dudes of Entombed and the cool vocalist Mats Levén is a heavy fucking riff-monster in the doomy and mystical way we want it. We all know Leif from Candlemass, one of the best bands ever, we do also know that Leif knows how to write awesome songs, but foremost for his ability to write monster riffs that gets your stereo blasting through the floor, and that’s just the kind of music we get here, and many songs could’ve fit on any Candlemass album.When I first heard of this project and saw the line-up I must say I was a bit sceptical, two guys from a Swedish-death metal band, Leif Edling and a power metal vocalist. Sounded to me like a strange mixture, members from death / doom and power metal.
My worries were all in vain, after just hearing the intro playing of “Black Room” I understood that I would get a nice time listening to the album.It blasts with a heavy riffs, and is pure awesomeness through the whole song and Mats vocals sounds awesome. Haven’t heard anything with this dude before, and I can say that it’s a positive feeling to hear him. Almost all songs can be summoned with the words I said about “Black Room” except two fillers, the short “Sibiria” with just some guitar and twisted sounds and a dude whispering, boring. The seconds one is the really unnecessary bass solo “Evil Rifaz”, Leif could’ve done something better than a 2 minute long boring bass solo. Really worth mentioning is the 12-minute ending song “Lunochod”, it has some boring calm parts, but then it explodes it gets reaaaally heavy and awesome, also a really cool chorus.
Conclusion can be put like this; if you’re out there looking for some great doom metal you should especially get the 4 first Candlemass albums and their selftitled album + this one. You have some great ones on here, and the two short filler-songs can easily just be skipped. I’m really hoping for a new KRUX-release someday and that Mats is still on the vocals. It can be killer. And it would be nice if we then get a cover as cool as this album has. Many people seem to dislike this greenish-cover, I think it looks great, fits perfect to the atrocious skull in the middle.
3 best songs: Black Room, Krux, Lunochod
Krux are a swedish all star Doom Metal outfit featuring members of Entombed as well as Candlemass bassist Leif Edling as the mastermind. While it sometimes feels like a tribute to the genre itself, as the word "doom" is mentioned lyrically in three tracks, it sure stands well on its own as a fun side project.
Krux is mostly slow Doom Metal with clean vocals, often relying on really simple yet extremely heavy riffage consisting of power chords. It's still far from the classic Candlemass formula as guitars are tuned in drop C, giving them a more modern punch. The riff work here is pure magic considering the simplicity. Imagine the heaviness of a band like Solitude Aeturnus, only with the aforementioned modern guitar sound. Keyboards are present in about every song, but refrain from being prominent. They enforce the guitars rather than overtaking the soundscape, which fits perfectly.
Vocals are handled by session work specialist Mats Levén, who does a good job. He goes for a slightly rapsy, confidence delivery that suits the catchy songs and mostly stays in his darker range. A lot of the vocal patterns are effectively aligned and entwined with the riff work; "Black Room" and "Omfalos" especially comes to mind. This is the biggest strength of the album next to the heaviness. The simplicity creates an addictive coherency within the songwriting. You can tell that mr. Edling is involved, that's for sure.
This is overall a successful and fun disc (if doom is supposed to be fun?) without any major downfalls.