Review by Sloof: When I saw the ‘Kelem’ artwork, it was obvious that Septic Flesh bass player Spiros Antoniou was involved. Typical artwork, a very own style and at the same moment it fits perfectly to the music. In this case, we speak about the French band Arkan who were formed in the area of Paris around 2005. So far, they released three albums and at the end of 2016, it’s time for their fourth output ‘Kelem’. When I took a look at the booklet, I saw the name Jens Bogren and Fascination Studio, so this results in a reassured feeling that the sound of the album would be top-notch!
The members of Arkan are from North African origin, and that reflects for a little in the songs as well. Unusual arrangements, oriental passages albeit limited and a special atmosphere is what Arkan is all about. They have a kind of Septic Flesh vibe mixed with an own identity and that’s a very good move! Compare them with Nile but in a totally diverse style in a mixture with Anathema their hardest material.
The clean vocals are presented by Manuel Munoz (formerly The Old Dead Tree) and the grunts and growls are the responsibility of Florent Jannier (also guitar player). All members of Arkan succeeded in their task: bringing up-to-date metal with social issues and an own identical sound. The arrangements vary from acoustic, atmospheric and dark to Death Metal eruption (‘Erhal’), but whatever their path is, it’s so well performed that this album grows in quality constantly!
Arkan succeeded in releasing their best album to date and my rating is utterly correct! For those that pay attention to the lyrics of the songs, check ‘Cub Of The Caliphate’ and ‘Just A Lie’ and you will agree that this band is aware about the world problems anno 2016. Recommended from start to finish! https://www.facebook.com/ArkanBandOfficial/
My rating: 92/100 (Surpasses the style of music, must be heard/ordered by every Metal fan)