Death Nord Kult
posted on 5/2009 By:
Today's bands are doing a lot more than simply challenging the boundaries of black metal; they're tormenting and beating the living hell out of it. Psychedelics, dulcimers, tin whistles, ambiance, mouth harps, didgeridoo's and even pedal steel have all found their way into this genre rooted in the most primordial of ooze. I like it, mind you, because progression often equates to advancement, but oftentimes I just want my black metal to kill me mercilessly, like a lifer shiving a snitch in a prison cafeteria. That's Russia's Old Wainds in a nutshell: cold, savage and doing hard time with no hope for parole. Not literally, of course, but they certainly have a "lifer's" approach to their craft in that they remain as venomous with poisonous intent today as they did over a decade ago.
But it's not as if Death Nord Kult doesn't show signs of progression since the Withers of the Wind days of 1996. This is actually one of the album's I quickly recommend to folks just dipping their toes into the genre who want to familiarize themselves with black metal's more raw face without sacrificing today's modern production techniques. In other words, Death Nord Kult sounds really clean, but it doesn't surrender the necessary crudeness. There's very little evidence here of "kvlt" production qualities to stand in the way of bass, drums (very well played drums here, folks) and a seemingly ENDLESS amount of riffs to slash you into grisly resignation.
And my Lord, these RIFFS!!! That's what Old Wainds is really all about. Yes, it's refreshing to actually hear some semblance of bass, and Izbor's drum work and nimble cymbal play really do shine, but the wealth of razor-sharp riffs from beginning to end (sans solo's and any form of melodicism) are what truly make Death Nord Kult a no-brainer for those interested in pure face-melting black metal. A healthy share of the riffing here also shows stark evidence of the band listening to a wealth of vintage thrash over the years. Just as one can hear elder Kreator in the group's other frosty project, Nav', we hear proof of discordant thrash ala Rrroooaaarrr/Killing Technology on this record, especially throughout the first three cuts. And carving right alongside these hostile riffs is yet another element to further enhance the album's ill-intent: the requisite rasped vocals belched from a hellish blast furnace.
If you're ready to shelve your hankerings for progressive black metal in favor of something targeted towards simple extermination, you'll find no band more qualified than Old Wainds. One quick swallow of Death Nord Kult will be plenty enough to send you to an early grave, so I'd advise you have your affairs in order.
One of the year's more vicious black metal releases, and therefore recommended.
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