Kandia – to obfuscate; to blind by light, and a brilliant representation of the positivity that the band wishes to radiate. Formed in Portugal in 2007 by singer Nya Cruz and guitarist Andre Da Cruz, Alt-Metal band Kandia unveiled their debut album “Quaternary” on January 21st, 2022 as one of the first signed through the Frontiers and Beyond initiative which was launched in an effort to sign bands who will bring forth the next wave of Metal.
Influenced by progressive rock like A Perfect Circle, Tool, and greats like Pantera and Pink Floyd, Kandia managed to find a unique blend of sounds out of fusing these influences to create raw, melodic, sensual music with positive messages whilst still unleashing aggressive beats and feral composition.
Our journey begins with “Obliterate” and open us to the prog feel with light and slow rhythm matched by passionate vocals.
“The Flood” is heavier, on the heels of Obliterate’s light nature with Nya belting out strong vocal command and letting is sway alongside the music. Playful synthesizers add a layer of digital wonder to a melodic track that builds its verses and smacks us with the chorus drop.
The third track, “Fight or Flight” is heavy, fast, and fueled by harsh vocals that have intense execution and a strong hold. “Shut the voices inside my head” speaks volumes while solid solo work is expressive beneath Nya’s boast of vocal range on this track.
“Until the End” is heavier, following suite with Fight or Flight’s tune and offers up good solos but, with more hard hits and the alt-vibe they’re after. It’s reminiscent of classic Lacuna Coil in sound and feel that starts off a bit strange but, picks up in speed and energy to counteract its odd introduction.
Dropping into “Turn the Tide”, it feels like the prequel to Until the End with strength and swagger, offering us courageous drops and opera-like vocal pride unheard in any previous tracks.
“PBP” has the progressive elements at the helm with an eerie harmony and backing vocals of ferocity to amplify the sound. Harsh vocals are a heavy feature on this track that kicks the dark atmosphere into high gear and twists between alt and prog with precision and fright.
The catchiness of “Deathwish” has already garnered more than 6k likes on YouTube with its accompanying music video that dabbles in the artistically macabre. “Misery loves a good company” is creepy but, leads into “is this your Deathwish?” and seeps into your ears until its repeated in your head willingly or not. Nya’s vocal range is prominent here with angelic highs, and tactical lows that are both alarming and welcomed. It opposes the outward harshness of other tracks, seemingly more mellow but resulting in one of the more admirable tracks from the album.
Tracks like “Murderers” cast a dazzling introduction that leads into an alt-rock track with quick drums and beautiful potency in its guitar work. The melody itself is captivating that features unique harmonies that are echoed with Nya’s vocal bravery. Light-hearted central lows make you feel like you’re sinking into the middle of a clear lake, and the saxophone addition puts a touch of old-school rock vibe onto an already killer track.
“A New Dawn” commands the album with robotic repetition that amps up this track’s alternative vibe with paused drumming that feels automatic in its strange patterns. Something about this track feels off, the vocals, guitar, and drums don’t seem to fit together as they should which made it difficult to focus on the song’s overall feel instead of individual features.
“Holocene” is a beautiful and expressive piece with expertly crafted composition, strong bass, rhythmic drums, and emotional vocals. A phenomenal end track to an astonishing debut album ripe with ethereal drops, haunting lyrics, “is this what we are?” and an array of talent on full display.
Overall, Quaternary is a well-rounded album with its own ups and downs but, well-crafted in its display of uniqueness derived from its diverse set of influences. Skillful riffs and adventurous solos are exposed with untamed vocals, talented backing bass and thunderous drums that leave this album like a burn – you nurture the sting but, the scar will leave you with a smile.
Favourite Tracks: Holocene, Deathwish