Cedric : After having released an EP in 2016, Finnish band Khanus is back on the metalfront with a first full album. The music on the EP, called ‘Rites Of Fire’, had people comparing Khanus’ music to bands like Behemoth and Svartidaudi, which is quite the non-standard combo. Since the drummer of the band is apparently also active in the alternative blackmetal band Code, I can somehow relate to these musical inspirations of the band. But what do the songs on ‘Flammarion’ sound like?
If I should describe the music on the album using just one word, it would be ‘dark’. Fans of modern, tight-sounding and mostly melodic death metal should probably steer away from this release. This is only for those who enjoy the dark and dangerous-sounding version of the genre. But the band does not just play death metal. Also elements of black metal and even some avantgarde are incorporated into the music. Just think of a mix between bands like Behemoth, Portal, Morbid Angel, Batushka and Dragged Into Sunlight. That will give the connoisseurs of the genre some good hints at what to expect from Khanus’ sound. It is not only that mix of various styles that makes the music of Khanus dark and interesting, but also (and especially) their lack of fear to stray of the known paths of the genres caught my attention, making their music even more interesting-sounding. Dark riffing, doomladen drums and nihilistic-sounding vocals are beautifuly blended together with repetitive atmospheres, ritualistic chants and hard bursts of agressiveness. The songs might be missing some extra depth or variety here and there to be captivating all through the record, but luckily the overall sound of the band is unique enough to guarantee an interesting listen. Productionwise ‘Flammarion’ sounds how it should sound. The album sounds heavy, dark, dirty and unpolished.
I am thrilled to finally hear a rather new band that tries to avoid the clichés of the black and death metal genre, and defines how the genre should sound in their mind anno 2018. No uninteresting, color-by-numbers metal, but furious and dark-sounding atmospheres that will scare the living hell out of Katy Perry fans or other people who are not familiar with extreme metal. This is how underground metal should sound, dangerous. If Khanus still grows in their songwriting-role, I am quite sure that we will be seeing them as a bigger name in the dark corners of the extreme metal scene.