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Paatos - Kallocain CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.62 | 138 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Kallocain is the sophomore release of Paatos who made an excellent debut with their 2002 release of Timeloss. This second effort will see some major differences in the overall sound of Paatos. The key change is the departure of guitarist Reine Fiske, being replaced by Peter Nylander. Because of this, Paatos no longer has that "Landberk feel" to their music. Kallocain is more closer in style to a mix of Porcupine Tree, Radiohead, and Anekdoten. Others have compared them to Portishead, but I can't make that claim because I've never listened to Portishead yet. Even though this change is significant, Paatos continues to deliver another excellent release.

Right from the start, the first track, Gasoline, clubs you over the head with raw energy suggesting Paatos has something really different to offer this time. It starts off with some wonderful violin, giving the song a slight Eastern feel, with the usual Mellotron backdrop that was always present on their debut album. It then kicks into a harder section that is unlike anything they have done before and Petronella Nettermalm's vocals have an exotic spacey feel to them. A wonderful start. The second track, Holding On, has some beautiful soft vocals, a genuinely sad atmosphere, is mellow and slow, and has a slight Porcupine Tree feel. The next four tracks -- Happiness, Absinth Minded, Look At Us, and Reality -- will all have a somewhat Porcupine Tree/Radiohead feel to them.On Reality, even the vocal delivery is like Steven Wilson's. Nylander's guitar work is somewhat better than on their debut (no offense to Reine Fiske, who I also like). These are all good songs, but Reality is kind of ruined by the programmed drums, although it has a nice Mellotron ending.

The seventh track, Stream, reminisces back to Paatos' debut, being slow and mellow with nice Mellotron backdrops. Next is Won't Be Coming Back, which is a stunningly beautiful piece, filled with energy and some nice Mellotron soundscapes. The final track is In Time and returns to the Porcupine Tree/Radiohead feel of the bulk of this album with some nice, dreamy guitar work at the end.

Although this time Paatos sounds very different from their debut, they give another excellent performance and I would hope they continue to have luck in the future. They are a very talented band and I think somewhere down the road they are bound to release a wonderful masterpiece, but they're not quite there yet. Nettermalm continues to sing mostly in a soft style, but when she does explode with power, the effect is stunning. She shows more of that on this second release, but I'm hoping she can really deliver something special in future releases. The overall feel of Kallocain is more or less mellow and melancholic, but it certainly has more bursts of energy than their debut. I don't think they've quite found the perfect balance between mellow and energetic, but they're moving in the right direction. Not a masterpiece yet, but definitely another excellent addition to any prog collection. Four stars and highly recommended.

progaeopteryx | 4/5 |


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