Themata review by Karnivool

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  • Released: Mar 14, 2005
  • Sound: 9
  • Lyrics: 9
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.3 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.6 (45 votes)
Karnivool: Themata

Sound — 9
I was first exposed to Karnivool when my brother bought me their first album called Persona. since then, Karnivool has blossomed to be one of the most unique and original sounding bands to ever come out of Australia, let alone Perth: the most secluded city in the world. coming from Perth myself I was incredibly proud to know that there is so much talent in my city. The first track 'Cote' leaves you drooling for more. beginning with a very interesting sounding intro, it goes into and verse which has a beginning comprising solely of bass harmonics. Even after only reaching that far I knew that this band was something special. You cannot help but wonder at the genius of Karnivool's guitarists. they manage to maintain an incredibly full sound in all their songs but hardly ever touch a power chord which is odd for a band in the metal genre. They also use a very large range of effects such a phase shifters and flangers. Their bassist never ceases to keep you interested with licks just plain fit. The drumming is also a big highlight. Most of the songs in the album have uncommon time signatures and the drummer maintains a very interesting beat with what he has. I found myself going back to songs just to listen to the drums alone.

Lyrics — 9
It is obvious to see that Ian Kenny (singer and front man) comes from a musical background. The lyrical content in every song is powerful enough to paint a picture but still leaves the listener with room to relate the words to him/herself. Throughout the album Kenny uses very subtle traces of word painting and ostinato which clearly outlines his musical education. As well as being and great lyricist, Ian Kenny's voice is just plain spectacular. His voice fits in perfectly with the instrumentation even with the high register that he has and an excessive use of falsetto. If you don't like his voice at first, be patient. I swear It'll grow on you.

Overall Impression — 10
Overall I can say without a doubt that this is the album I have ever listened to. Please tell me any flaws that you would like to point out about the album because I can honestly say that I can't find a single one. The main reason I love this album so much is it's originality. If you're bored of listening to the same old metal core or progressive rock then this is definately the album for you. It lets you know that there is still plenty of new ideas for music out there and it is truly an inspiration. Stand out tracks in the album for me were 'Cote', 'Themata' and 'Roquefort'. 'Shutterspeed' is also a catchy song with a very original sounding solo. If this album were ever stolen I would definately hunt down the guy who took it from me... and then go buy another copy just for the sake of it. And I was serious: please post anything that you don't like about the album so I can hear other peoples' opinions.

17 comments sorted by best / new / date

    these guys are captain insano. just cant wait for the next CD to come out. as for the guys seen them play now tonnes of times. keeps getting better each time. as with Birds of tokyo, Kenny is a genious. that band has amazing sound. as with dead letter circus, ah man another great band. i normally dont listen to this type of music but they are unreal bands!!!!
    Shred Penguin wrote: Themata is an awe inspiring album. If you want some more wicked aussie alt-rock check out .hinge, rook and sleep parade. Great bands from the melbourne scene.
    lol, the bassist from sleep parade taught me guitar for a year, I'm awesome.
    I came across them on Youtube. Great band. I checked out Dead Letter Circus from their Myspace page. They're a good band too.
    Wow. Everyone seems to be loving this band. Well, I saw them at Homebake last weekened, and they smoked it (considering the sound wasn't as good as their stand alone shows). They played a lot of new songs, but the crowd (rent-a-meathead) decided to start a circle of death and ignore the band. I was embarrassed for Sydney. It wasn't until they played their 'recognised' stuff, that the meatheads let the rest of us play. All in all,a great band, who promised me (isaw them in the signing tent) that they would release their new album early next year, with an Australian tour thrown in for good measure! Woo. Hoo.
    Shred Penguin
    Themata is an awe inspiring album. If you want some more wicked aussie alt-rock check out .hinge, rook and sleep parade. Great bands from the melbourne scene.
    champions! aussie music is awesome right now. makes me think of the heydays of the oils, hoodoo gurus, men at work, screaming jets, inxs. these bands are just as good why are our radio stations ignoring this and still playing american rap crap?
    i found out about these guys from and was blown away, they're awesome
    The whole band is exceptional. Great cd in a climate of boring and expected, predictable music. I can't recommend it enough, and their older stuff is just as good.
    Great album, by a great band. I've been a fan of Karnivool since their first ep, Persona, came out. I agree anyone liking this band should check out the butterfly effect, COG and the birds of tokyo. Dead Letter Circus, in my opinion, would be a great great band if they pulled their heads out of their own arses and worked on their live performance, because for now, it isn't great. But aside from that, Themata: a masterpiece. Anyone who can get it should also check out the bonus cover of sleeping satellite, rare, but fantastic
    for the record, every dead letter circus song sounds the same.
    Great band. Heavy Instrumental but there is still a focus on solid vocals. There hasnt been a band that mixes melody with heavy like this since sevendust
    These guys are good great vocals mixed with heavy instrumental. They can also put on an amazing live show.