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David Galas
Cataclysm

Company: Vendlus Records
Release: 2007
Reviewer: Etiam
Genre: Gothic, ambient, and darkwave
Rating
1.5



  • It just isn't all that impressive, cataclysmic, or even climactic in the least



  • 'Cataclysm' is the first solo effort of multi-instrumentalist and chronic shoe-gazer David Galas. After a stint with the comparably gloomy Lycia, David broke off circa 2000 and spent the next five years years composing and creating this album. It was finally brought to market in early 2007 via Vendlus Records, a new and generally dependable label for black-sheep artists.

    As a product of that uninhibited label, one shouldn't bet bottom dollar that 'Cataclysm' would turn out as a metal record. And, indeed, though it does brush up against the genre's bulwarks from time to time, the majority of its 70+ minutes are spent sloshing about the waters of gothic, ambient, and darkwave. When done properly, these can all be compelling genres that enfolds the listener like the womb, a suffocating cocoon, or any point in between. When done improperly, they are a frustrating bore more fit for an occult bookstore's washroom.

    And this is the case with 'Cataclysm'. Over 19 tracks, Galas plods through the depths of his emotional doldrums with resilience. Unfortunately, the product sounds more apathetic than melancholic, and is impossible to pay it much heed. Most songs are mere sketches: a repeating riff or piano phrase while David drones on sourly before reaching an arbitrary end. Those songs that attempt more--in instrumentation, composition, etc.--tend to be better, and some have the potential to be rather good, but this potential is never realized. The result sounds something similar to a Dax Riggs project (Deadboy or Acid Bath) with all its vitals removed, or a 21st century version of Orgy's Tears For Fears covers with the rhythm tracks turned down.

    Nearly every track employs the same lazy strumming patterns and drags along at the same lazy tempo. The instrumentation does vary on occasion--a couple times even becoming quite metallic--and some tracks have a vastly different sound than others, but the album generates so little momentum that even its best passages are smothered and soon forgotten. Indeed, David would have done well to draw even a spark of energy from a more accomplished Galas, first name Diamanda.

    Jesting aside, David Galas has obviously poured his soul into this project. It is a true example of the one-man affair, as he composed the lyrics, realized the concept, performs all the vocals and instrumentation. There's no doubt that it was a draining affair, and the dedication it must have required is admirable. It just isn't all that impressive, cataclysmic, or even climactic in the least.


    Maximum Metal Rating Legend - Click for Full Details
    5 Excellent - Buy it and say a prayer to the metal gods that you were tuned on to this masterpiece. A classic.
    4-4.5 Great - Almost perfect records but there's probably a clunker or a lacking somewhere to keep it from perfection. You won't feel bad about dropping some bones on these.
    3.5 Good - Most of the record is good, but there may be some filler. This is the OK range where you'd search for the record on sale or used.
    3 Average - Some good songs, some bad ones at about a half/half ratio. Could show skills but be dull overall. Redeeming qualities for indy bands are effort and passion. Majors that don't try or suck outright end up here.
    2-2.5 Fair - Worth a listen, but best obtained by collectors. There is much better metal out there.
    1-1.5 Bad - Major problems with music, lyrics, production, etc.
    0 Terrible or an otherwise waste of your life and time.

    Note: Reviews are graded from 0-5, anything higher or not showing is from our old style. Scores, however, do not reveal the important features. The written review that accompanies the ratings is the best source of information regarding the music on our site. Reviewing is opinionated, not a qualitative science, so scores are personal to the reviewer and could reflect anything from being technically brilliant to gloriously cheesy fun.

    Demos and independent releases get some slack since the bands are often spent broke supporting themselves and trying to improve. Major releases usually have big financial backing, so they may be judged by a heavier hand. All scores can be eventually adjusted up or down by comparison of subsequent releases by the same band. We attempt to keep biases out of reviews and be advocates of the consumer without the undo influence of any band, label, management, promoter, etc.

    The best way to determine how much you may like certain music is to listen to it yourself.



    ALL FULL REVIEWS FOR: DAVID GALAS
    CD
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    DOR
    REVIEWER DATE
    CataclysmDavid Galas
    2007
    Etiam4/4/2008


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