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Kekal - The Habit Of Fire

About.com Rating 3.5 Star Rating

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Kekal - The Habit Of Fire
Open Grave Records
This is an album that's extremely difficult to categorize. The press materials call Kekal's style "urban avantgarde metal." I'm not so sure about the urban, but the avantgarde description is pretty accurate. This is an album that's experimental, unusual and completely unique.

Kekal are a trio from Indonesia who have been around for over a decade. The Habit Of Fire is their sixth album, although most of their previous releases weren't widely available in the U.S.

Most of the songs on the album have an industrial vibe, with a lot of synths and samples. Some of the songs aren't metal at all, with strange electronic melodies and sounds and no real hooks or riffs. They are more like atmospheric soundscapes. But other songs have a lot of metal elements, from melodic guitar riffs to harsh black metal vocals.

The songs on The Habit Of Fire have many lengthy instrumental sections and are very progressive sounding. Kekal is constantly changing tempos and textures and challenging the listener to keep up. There are times when the songs get self-indulgent and overly repetitive for me, but when you're pushing the boundaries that's bound to happen. This isn't a CD that will appeal to the masses, but if you've got an open mind and want to hear music that's avantgarde, unusual and experimental, give it a shot.

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