Katagory V - Present Day

Year of Release: 2001
Label: Nightmare Records
Catalog Number: n/a
Format: CD
Total Time: 47:35:00

Katagory V are a progressive metal band from the US with elements from a variety of a power and progressive metal bands that include such hallowed names as early Fates Warning, Crimson Glory, Steel Prophet, and Jester's March with touches of Gamma Ray and Ark. Lots of big names there but can they compete?

The short answer would have me sitting on the fence. Musically, Katagory V inject a lot of mixture with the jazz influenced drumming but there's a ton of heavy guitars in the mix as well. It is a well thought out album that contains a lot of melodies, an edgy, raw feel production, and a bit of self-indulgence every now and again. The band sounds very different to many other independent bands of late, but at the same time I feel this is an album, and a band, that have the potential to be more than what this album presents.

If Present Day had a shortcoming it would be the lack of impact of the songs. I should preface that by saying the album opens up with three absolute marvelous tracks in "I Live On," "Evil Princess," and "The Call Of Midnight," that have a strength, power, and a magnitude that is reminiscent of early prog favourites Crimson Glory. The vocals of Lynn Allers (yes, that's male vocals, not female) at times remind me of Midnight (ex-Crimson Glory), Keith Sudano (ex-Eternity X), and Olaf Bilic (House of Spirits, Jester's March) but the band also run power metal chords where Lynn sounds like Kai Hansen (Gamma Ray). Unfortunately, the rest of the numbers don't have that massive impact of the early tracks and the band struggle to continue the creativity despite the supremely catchy "Steel Dungeon," the title track and the ever-building "The Beginning Of Our End." "Morning Light" has some nice musical interludes but fails in some of the group choruses. The song is very Eternity X during their MindGames period.

There are some very clever musical moments in Present Day that are out of the norm with metal bands, with dexterous use of musical breaks, progressive tendencies, and some of the highest screams in metal I've heard since Andy B. Franck on the Ivanhoe discs. What Katagory V have and what they can do are two different things and the album lacks a consistency with vocal performance, and vocal and musical melodies. But the fundamental elements are there.

For an independent release, that was subsequently picked up by Lance King's (Balance of Power) label Nightmare Records this has lots of positives such as a generally good, yet erratic, raw production. In general though - half of this album is above average the other half is below average. A worthy first effort and the start of bigger things to come.

Similar To: (early) Fates Warning, Crimson Glory, Eternity X

[This review originally appeared November 2002 at the ProgPower Online review site -ed.]

I Live On (5:24) / Evil Princess (3:28) / The Call Of Midnight (3:41) / The Beginning Of Our End (5:33) / Steel Dungeon (3:45) / Morning Light (5:32) / The Forsaken (4:34) / Negative Attraction (3:57) / Present Day (6:41) / One Second Warning (5:00)

Matt Suiter - drums
Curtis Morrell - guitar
Lynn Allers - vocals
Dustin Mitchell - bass
Ryan Taylor ? guitar

Present Day (2001)
A New Breed Of Rebellion (2004)
The Rising Anger (2006)
Hymns Of Dissension (2007)

Genre: Progressive-Power Metal

Origin US

Added: December 29th 2004
Reviewer: Gary Carson
Artist website: www.facebook.com/KatagoryV
Hits: 530
Language: english


[ Back to Reviews Index | Post Comment ]