Kraken - _Dreams of a Greater Empire_
by: Paul Schwarz (4 out of 5)
It is a pity when one hears very accomplished musical composition be stifled by a production which doesn't fully do it justice and which stems, in all likelihood, from a lack of resources on the part of the artist. That said, _Dreams of a Greater Empire_ is still very impressive for a demo-stage recording. Kraken, for at present the man -is- the band, has created an intoxicating mix of full-bodied, pounding black metal riffage (infused at points with the calculated beat of doom), classical stylings and melodic involvement. The mixture is as close to seamless as most artists ever get, sometimes building and sweeping to tug at the emotions while at others playing the dynamics of keyboards, guitars, vocals and drums off each other with gripping effect. The professionalism of composition on display is as admirable to contemplate as it is a joy to listen to, and with better production I think there is no doubt that Kraken could outdo many of the signed black/death/doom bands out there in the world today. I await his next move, whether accompanied by others or not.

Contact: 115 Richmond Rd, Kingston, Surrey, KT2 5BX, UK

(article published 9/12/1999)

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