Arkata Impeding Your Chances For Success

"It’s not a big deal unless you make it a big deal,” chastises George Clooney’s gun-toting psycho Seth in From Dusk Till Dawn, and Arkata’s attribute many are going make a big deal out of is that they have a female vocalist. However, unless you’re seeing this T-dot five-piece live, you wouldn’t notice, since Jill is one of the evilest-sounding vocal shredders going, irrevocably scarring her chords during Arkata’s six-song self-titled independent debut. And while people will emphasis her harshness and the fact that she’s a woman in a predominantly male genre, this shouldn’t overshadow Arkata’s music. While possessing a difficult sound to pin down (but one that is frustratingly familiar), other than the incredibly blackened vocals, Arkata are reminiscent of an avant melding of semi-progressive metal and hardcore influences, fleetingly recalling some of the "artier” NYC metalcore acts of yesteryear while throwing in a fare bit of "modern” complexity in songs that gradually reveal themselves. A malevolent, sometimes clinical and foreboding atmosphere, with the occasional emo-ish moment of melodicism (not unlike a more metallic Anasarca), colours this record and Arkata mix in spots of intricacy without losing the thread. Nice DIY packaging and better than average "independent” production also raise Arkata’s profile, and an eye should be kept on them, as they could grow the ranks of Ontario’s recently signed. (Independent)