Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2019
Encyclopaedia Metallum

Best viewed
without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
or higher.

Privacy Policy

The Time ... has come - 100%

kalervon, March 7th, 2013

This album stood the test of time. Back when I bought this awaited album ("Gate" had made a big impression on me and there was over year between both releases; just under a year for me), I was pleasantly surprised to hear such melodic but nevertheless brutal metal. Today, in retrospect, I can hardly find anything comparable.

The album opens with ambient noises evoking rusty blades in a deserted warehouse, but after "The Time ... has come" is pronounced, it's the Kataklsym hyperblast, faster than "The Orb" of the previous, mini, album. Max Duhamel's drumming, with the elaborate production Robinson and his studio had to offer (think Voïvod's "Nothingface"), is much more solid than his previously recorded performance on the 7" single. He also holds the songs better than the previous drummer did on "Gate". All songs have incredibly melodic-yet-brutal riffs superimposed to blasting drums and wall of brutal vocals that possess both depth and melody. It's not just about Sylvain Houde's vocals, but the unrelenting layered growling vocals that the band are spreading through their songs, creating demonic soundscapes. I suspect Maurizio had a hand in this as well, contributing higher pitched screams. And this is a constant of early Kataklysm, no matter who the producer was (Rémillard, Robinson, Dagenais). For that reason, even though some riffs are catchy, no one could ever say this band is selling out. Even those who diss Carcass or Napalm Death for turning commercial with "Necroticism" or "Harmony Corruption" (as much as I disagree) can't possibly make this statement with "Sorcery". Some songs have several sections and the concept of verse/chorus is almost completely absent or unrecognizable. I would call this progressive but there is no such thing as an idea of progress here. I believe this is in part due to Sylvain Houde's lack of musical training and his strong influence in shaping the songs to make all of his lyrics fit, no matter what. The said lyrics aren't genius but they manage to conjure images that are not too cheesy while using a vocabulary that sounds ominous enough for this type of metal.

It's hard to believe that the first album's trilogy, "The Rebirth Vortex of Creation" was actually written and recorded for a demo shortly before "Vision the Chaos" single. It was performed live before "Sorcery" even came out. That trilogy is probably what the band has ever done best. Most Kataklysm lyrics until then had been influenced by, if not plagiarized on, the book Necronomicon released in 1977 and soon published in paperback form by Avon Books (hencetoforth known as the Simon Necronomicon). The trilogy story, for whoever would be interested, is also influenced by a computer RPG game named Ultima, which began in 1981. The winged gargoyles appeared in Ultima VI "The False Prophet", 1990, and that's where the whole "gargoyle language" comes from. Houde attempts to fuse both universes; the gargoyles as the Ancient Ones (Simon Necronomicon/Lovecraft). All three songs of said trilogy have commercial value which is not overplayed. Sylvain and Maurizio show a good vocal chemistry especially in "Whirlwind of Withered Blossom".

Houde's voice couldn't sound more powerful during "Elder God", and what amazes is the range he possesses while singing in this inhuman mode. The line "Listen to my Magick/Hear the voices of fury" extends over 4 tones (e/C). He is singing, not just growling. Houde is actually very present on this album (on all early Kataklysm), which is quite unusual for a vocalist in a death metal band who does not play any instrument. He "announces" the title track, "Elder God", and "Once.. Upon Possession" begins a cappella.

The songs in the other trilogy ("The Ressurected Portal of Heaven") do not all stand alone as well as those of the first (who were also a demo); but they still work really well together. The first one begins with a very clever build up; the second one has some very good moments as well (there almost seems to be an accelerando, intentional or not, during the various "my images you have turned to the dead" repetitions (~1:00)). Again, these lyrics are taken from the Simon Necronomicon. The third song, "Dead Zygote" has probably less memorable moments than any other on this album.

Metallica's influence can be heard in the last song, "World of Treason", which reminds (though not as grandiose) of instrumentals such as "Orion" or "To Live is to Die" in its attempt. Several times on this album, Maurizio's bass in fact sounds like Cliff Burton's famous "(Anasthesia) Pulling Teeth" due to the fact that it is soloing alone as a guitar normally would.

Once in a while Kataklysm will drag you in a long sequence of alternating bass riffs, guitar riffs, drum segments and insane growling that will linger almost long enough to bore you, but then strike you again with catchy riffs, beats and vocal lines. "Sorcery" has a lot of contrasts and none of them are cheap breakdowns.