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Stockholm, Sweden (1991 – present)

There are multiple bands named Katatonia: 1) Swedish band. 2) Polish death/thrash metal band.

1) Katatonia is a Swedish band formed in Stockholm in 1991 by Jonas Renkse and Anders Nyström. The bands music has doom metal elements and influences with their progressive metal style, noting the overall bleak melancholy and despair sound.

After more than a year of rehearsals and composing, the first real fruits of their labour came to light in mid 1992 with the release of the demo “Jhva Elohim Meth”, recorded at Sweden’s Gorysound Studio and produced by the multi-musician Dan Swanö. The demo sold out immediately, bringing Katatonia to the attention of Dutch label Vic Records, who went on to re-release the demo as a mini CD, titled “Jhva Elohim Meth - The Revival”. With the CD selling out fast and their reputation spreading like a wildfire through the underground, the duo knew they would need a fuller line-up to move the band up and forward. So, bassist Guillaume Le Huche (aka Israphel Wing) was enlisted to their ranks, enabling them to perform live in concert for the first time in their career.

In 1993, things progressed at pace and at the end of 1992 the trio entered into a one-album deal with the now defunct Swedish label No Fashion records. April 1993 saw Katatonia re-enter Gorysound (now renamed Unisound) to record their first full-length album ‘Dance of December Souls’, produced by Katatonia and Dan Swanö.


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  • Darkes7

    "Only a 12 year old would think that Katatonia's music is more difficult than most metal." Yep, because most metal which is not technical or prog is more complex than power chords and simple one-note riffs played with fast speed. I love metal, but this is a fact that it's not, and another fact is Katatonia has been writing much out of the box from VE onwards, it's not just about how many notes they play, but also e.g. the rhythm which is all over the place (and Daniel was responsible for a lot of that and why I loved his playing). But then, you seem quite a lot like an average Metal Archives forum user, and you kinda murdered your credibility by cutting out one sentence out of a pretty long post so yeah, you're kind of impossible to take seriously at this point. :) Go tremolo pick your black metal.

    Yesterday 11:01am Reply
  • TheArtofShred88

    "Argumentation on the level of an average 12-year old, good job guys." Only a 12 year old would think that Katatonia's music is more difficult than most metal. I've read a lot of unbelievably silly thing on shoutboxes and that's definitely in the top 10.

    Yesterday 3:38am Reply
  • DestinyBond

    Daniel has etched his name in the band, decided to leave because it would not work if he continued. I suppose that being in a touring band is exhausting.

    Yesterday 2:30pm Reply
  • Darkes7

    Yes, and it's not that uncommon from what I know... I really do hope he will come back eventually, he's one of my favourite drummers and I really think he deserves a reputation up there with the Martins from Opeth, he's at least equally amazing.

    Yesterday 1:53pm Reply
  • Kennoth

    I find it hard to believe that one of the most successful modern metal bands has problems with paying bills. If that's the case, then the things are even more depressing than I thought.

    17 Apr 1:11pm Reply
  • Darkes7

    On an even far more depressing note...

    17 Apr 10:58am Reply
  • Darkes7

    Argumentation on the level of an average 12-year old, good job guys.

    17 Apr 10:58am Reply
  • IBlackened

    "Definitely more challenging than most songs, especially (Drone Doom) metal". It's fixed.

    14 Apr 1:05pm Reply
  • TheArtofShred88

    "Definitely more challenging than most songs, especially metal" I lol'd.

    13 Apr 10:46pm Reply
  • Frostomania

    Просто Боги!

    10 Apr 10:40pm Reply
  • IBlackened

    @ jesterhead1 Just to your ears they sound darker these days

    9 Apr 3:33pm Reply
  • necro-wizard

    ale pierdolisz ziomek

    8 Apr 9:31am Reply
  • Darkes7

    Actually I do, and some tracks from VE onwards really are not _that_ simple. They're not Dream Theater-level complicated, or even Opeth, but especially the faster, more aggressive tracks are far from simple (take Leaders or Consternation for example) and definitely more challenging than most songs, especially metal, I've encountered. Also I've probably said that way too many times, but I really dislike the depressive rock tag, first because I really disagree with the notion of "depressive" (depressive music for me is Justin Bieber), second because the core of the music is still metal.

    7 Apr 9:38pm Reply
  • MarstonD

    Одни из лучших.

    7 Apr 12:34pm Reply
  • TheArtofShred88

    Darkes7, do you play guitar? Katatonia's riffs are unbelievably simple and far from technical (it made me lol that you said that.) I enjoy Katatonia's new stuff, some of it anyway. At this point I'm really getting into Dead End Kings, I didn't really like it before but it's a great album. Discouraged Ones, Last Fair Deal Gone Down and The Great Cold Distance are great too. I use to like Tonight's Decision and Viva Emptiness a fair bit but not so much any more. Most of their other stuff is pretty inconsistent in my opinion. A few good songs, few okay songs, mostly filler. Still, their music is far from prog and far from technical. I think "depressive rock" fits their music the most. They'll never release an album even close to being on par with Brave Murder Day or Dance of December Souls though. Simple as that.

    7 Apr 3:19am Reply
  • savoy-wang

    i am talking about Kocytean, bro.

    7 Apr 2:43am Reply
  • Darkes7


    7 Apr 12:56am Reply
  • savoy-wang

    totally an indie-rock band now.

    7 Apr 12:03am Reply
  • Darkes7

    @TheArtofShred88: I guess it just comes from the fact they combine heavy riffs and atmospheric/ambient-ish parts (which is also pretty common in prog metal) and since around Viva Emptiness their riffing has got a bit technical - the song structure is usually relatively simple, but the instrumentation is everything but simple especially in the heavier tracks. Although still, I find the "progressive metal" to be a bit overkill, but then there isn't any established genre tag that fits them at this point. If we really, really need a tag, "melancholic metal" is still the best description of Katatonia I've heard. // jesterhead1: no, quite a few people prefer the new Katatonia, many like all eras, but unfortunately only the "DOOM ONLY" fanboys tend to be loud and obnoxious.

    6 Apr 7:43pm Reply
  • Kay_Dragon

    i also like the new katatonia far better, their new sound is just amazing

    6 Apr 7:33pm Reply
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