Katatonia - City Burials (2020)


After taking a brief hiatus a few years ago, Katatonia has returned with their signature melancholic Progressive/Alternative Rock and Metal mix with “City Burials”. As one of their most accessible and darker releases in recent years, this album delivers eleven tracks and nearly 50 minutes of highly emotional music with the band’s signature sound. If you are into the mellower side of things, this release is the perfect backdrop for a quiet evening of quarantine.

The release opens with the moody vibes of “Heart Set to Divide” and “Behind the Blood”, both tracks nicely frame Jonas Renkse emotive vocals with nice atmospherics and heavy guitars. More experimental elements are used on songs like “Lacque” and “Vanishers”, which show an interesting electronic undertone, similar to what Anathema tried on their last release. Other tracks just deliver the oozing melancholy achieved by lush vocal melodies and weeping guitars like “Rein”.

For those looking for more dynamic songs, “TheWinter of Our Pasing” and “City Glaciers” have that nice momentum building passages perfectly flanked by intricate drumming and subtle tempo changes. With a certain Southern twang, “Neon Epitaph” is definitely one of the most unique songs in this release, while the emotional closer “Untrodden” brings things full circle in this very powerful release.

Overall, “City Burials” is another brilliant signature Katatonia release filled with intricate textures and very moody atmospherics. The band excels at creating very crafty songs that both have a few exploratory elements and also deliver the core sound we expect from the band. If you are into the band’s releases since the “Discouraged Ones” release, then this is one release that you can certainly enjoy. We can’t wait to hear the band live again and hopefully making a comeback to North America to promote this release.

Band: Katatonia Album: City Burials

Label: Peaceville Records

Release: April 24th, 2020

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Genre: Alternative/Progressive Rock/Metal

Country: Sweden

Rating: 91/100

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