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Katatonia

Dead End Kings

Katatonia
Dead End Kings is the ninth studio album from Swedish masters of doom and gloom Katatonia. Known for their emotional, plaintive work, their latest offering is another exploration in aching desire and loss. Jonas Renkse's haunting vocals seize the listener's attention early; he is capable of expressing longing with a clarity few others can match, his voice at once demonstrating an incredibly light touch while always sounding just a little thick with tears. The textures of Dead End Kinds will be familiar to Katatonia fans: shivering, diaphanous curtains of sound that ripple gentle and then suddenly part with the force from a blast of guitar histrionics or hysterical drumming. The song structures are dark and gothic, but without a trace of horror ― this is the sophisticated, almost literary misery that channels nothing so clearly as the feeling of walking through a city in the rain, weighed down by a broken heart. While their earlier work was characterized by occasional bursts of much more aggressive noise, they have mellowed into a very mature and subtle kind of misery. While the unrelenting progression of melancholy ballads and pensive reflections can become oppressive when consumed all at once, "The One You Are Looking For Is Not Here" or "The Racing Heart" are excellent candidates for the ideal song when nothing will do, but the bittersweet pleasure of wallowing in your misery. (Peaceville)
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