Label: Independent/Elevation Records
Three similar bands:
An Isolated Mind/Iapetus/Khonsu
Rating: HHHHHHH (5/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm
1. Anthropos Rising
2. Born Anew
3. The Alchemy of Creation
4. The Ascending Collective
5. Conduit of Light
6. Anarchy in the New Earth
7. Summer Harvest
8. Zero Point
9. Destiny Recalibration

The music on this album was written and performed anonymously
Kekal is an entity with no official members

Beyond the Glimpse of Dreams (1998)
Embrace the Dead (1999)
The Painful Experience (2001)
1000 Thoughts of Violence (2003)
Acidity (2005)
The Habit of Fire (2007)
Audible Minority (2008)
8 (2010)
Autonomy (2013)
Multilateral (2015)
Deeper Underground (2018)

Quantum Resolution (2020)


Produced by Jeff Arwadi for Kekal
Recorded, mixed and mastered by Jeff Arwadi at Ideation Station
Cover artwork by Soundmind Graphics
Photography by Jeff Arwadi and SCA

Released 2022-07-15
Reviewed 2022-07-24


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Indonesian band Kekal is a bit of an oddity, not too many known metal-bands come from Indonesia. Even more odd is probably the fact that the band has no members, it is former contributors, and perhaps some new that creates what becomes albums by Kekal. They haven’t had any official members since 2009, the debut came in the 1990s, back then they were a more straightforward extreme metal entity – but lately they have done a lot more explorative ventures. We here at Hallowed have written positively about Kekal and their albums, most recently the Quantum Resolution album that was released in 2020.

This album was written during the recording process, something that probably leads to a more spontaneous sound to their album. Compared with the predecessor I can say that I recognise several elements, but that this is quite different. Pace is mostly slow, a bit dreamy, some growly parts, there are quite a wide span of musical elements through this album, but they are all woven together in a very impressive way. I like the clean vocals, the growling is rather typical growling. The production is very good, the soundscapes are excellent. Variation is big throughout the songs, the album has quite a lot of depth, and it is fairly original with a dynamic soundscape.

It is an enjoyable album; it is dramatic in its shifts and adventurous sound. The songs are really good all the way through, I don’t find it easy to pick a favourite but the second track Born Anew is a good candidate to the favourite spot as I very much like that track. I like this album as it showcases a band that dares to thread elsewhere, and not just do the tried and tested. I like how they explore, how they find, and how they express that adventurous spirit in their music – if you liked the preceeding albums by Kekal you will like this one as well as it is made in the same kind of spirit.

Envisaged is a great album, the often boring, stale, and nostalgic world of metal needs albums that comes with outside the box thinking, it needs more renewal than it gets. Kekal is one of those bands that sounds different, and who dares to explore, who dares to be original, and dares to leave the paths that are so threaded and hardened by now that no one really cares much for whoever walks there again. Think of metal like a new discovery, the first adventurers that gets to a place do an interesting and fascinating thing, the ones coming after are just tourists. It is the same with metal, or music in general, but many of those tourists are releasing albums that they want to sell. It is like everyone trying to sell their vacation books from hikes in Norway or wherever they go. Kekal are fortunately different and they are adventurers, I’d rather buy their stuff than the next perfect heavy metal album. Creativity like this should be encouraged, so get to it and buy yourself a copy of Envisaged.