WORDS: JO COSGROVE
Forming near the end of 2016, Dundee metal band Catalysis have already proven to have the determination it takes to succeed in the music scene. Since releasing their debut EP, 2017’s ‘Into The Unknown’, the four-piece quickly gained a sizeable fanbase online and began to solidify their place in the industry.
Following the release of three tracks, the upcoming self-titled EP is how the band will celebrate closing 2018 and opening 2019 to newer and greater opportunities. The first track ‘Nothing Left’ was the last song the group released prior to the EP’s full release and can be received as the very beginning of a listener’s introduction to Catalysis, or a refresher of a long- or short-term fan. In both cases, one listen to the first song of a new era can make all the difference.
“it holds a sound that one can hear and sense they are passionate about learning, practicing and perfecting”
Taking it as the first track of the EP, it makes for an appropriate introduction. Opening with a strong drumbeat, and builds up the liveliness and tension that the genre thrives on – coming from a band that can still be considered new to the industry, that’s pretty impressive. Describing the EP’s sound as using the influence of groove, thrash and death metal, it’s a fusion that they had shown through ‘Nothing Left’ is one they are sticking to. For at least a short while. The song introduces the listener to the vocal diversity that will be highlighted throughout the EP’s entirety. As most fans of hardcore and metal genres are greatly aware of, an extensive and effective use of unclean vocals is near vital to put in that power a track needs to succeed with fans, and Catalysis do not disappoint on this front. Going between tougher unclean vocals and the occasional melodic vocals in the choruses, there’s a balance that one may believe to be almost perfect. The track finishes the same way it begins, completing a musical composition like a full circle; coming to an end in the exact way it started.
An interesting structure, and one that may keep some listeners hooked and hoping for satisfaction in the outcome. The following two tracks are the other two single releases, ‘Cleansed’ and ‘Deadline’; the latter being the band’s first single release from the EP. With ‘Cleansed’ opening with the soothing sounds of trickling water – an artistic breather after the last track – before heading straight into heavy guitar once again, it plays on a clever structure. Using the sound effects of water with a song appropriately titled ‘Cleansed’, it pulls in listeners to pay further attention to the track upon another playthrough to note certain lyrics and phrases that link together.
“a record of energy, emotion, and pure aggression”
With ‘Deadline’, this was fans’ first ever glimpse into what this new EP had in store for them as the first single release. If this one song represents what the future of the group holds, then the only way left to go is up for them. As a standalone track, it holds a sound that one can hear and sense they are passionate about learning, practicing and perfecting. From beginning with a catchy guitar riff, adding a chant-like chorus with a collective of vocals, and ending with sudden silence, it is simple enough to introduce the latest era they are entering together and it give listeners a choice to enter it with them.
The EP ends with the last track, ‘Fallen’, which contains the most remarkable guitar solo and the most notable use of changing between clean and unclean vocals effectively. Summing up a record of energy, emotion, and pure aggression, never slowing down nor smoothing out in any capacity, Catalysis are evolving and settling in the place they want to stand. With 2018 ending with this EP, it is now time to ponder. What will they unveil in 2019? What are they preparing? We’ll look forward to hearing more from them.