Featuring the drummer of Wormwood, Of Lineages Long Forgotten contains 49 minutes of symphonic black metal. The band take clear influence from the likes of Dimmu Borgir and the legendary Emperor, while also carving their own path through the blackened landscape. On this album the classic symphonic style is brought forward into the contemporary era with skill and passion.
With an old-school symphonic black metal base, Katharos splice into this a technical delivery and elements of death metal force. The former adds a complexity to the songs that draws the listener in rather than repels, while the latter brings an additional heaviness to the tracks and some prime, bloodthirsty riffing. There’s a large melodic component to these songs that works well with the many other musical moving parts, and everything fits together nicely.
The band’s use of orchestration is subtler than you might be expecting, although still prominent in places and a vital aspect of the songs. The music flows well around this, feeling fully embedded into the symphonic tapestry that cloaks everything like a majestic blackened shroud.
Brought into 2022 by the band’s technical and death metal-influenced delivery and execution, Katharos’ symphonic style is very satisfying. It’s heavily reminiscent of Dimmu Borgir and Emperor in places, and leaves me with a strong sense of nostalgia, but it also stands on its own two feet enough to be worth listening to rather than simply returning to the classic albums by those two notable bands.
If you’re a fan of symphonic black metal then Of Lineages Long Forgotten is definitely one to spend some time with.