posted on 9/2010 By:
Hailing from Venezuela but featuring a currently international lineup with the inclusion of Nick Barker, Noctis Imperium lays out a plentiful eight tracks on their new EP, Nihil, which serves as a telling preview of their upcoming long-player, The Age Of The Golden Dawn. What you’ll discover is a band with a solid understanding of the thrashy, blacker side of death metal, and a hankering for tight, late 90’s styles of riffing and songwriting performed with admirable energy, but very little originality.
After opening instrumental “Ra-Hoor-Khuit” makes its very brief appearance, the band launches into a blend of recent Immortal with shades of Angelcorpse and a little Behemoth thrown in, while avoiding the heavier elements of the latter two acts. The riffs are varied between humming tremolo with chunkier, more methodical and melodic elements added as well, harmonizing with precision and very cool bass guitar accents throughout. Vocalist/guitarist and bandleader Aeneas Inferno fits right between death and black metal with his parched rasp, laying back into a less forced pitch when the mellower, more melodic side of the band shows through, and I can hear quite a similarity to Vreid when they let the music breathe and ease up on the speed. It’s nice to hear Barker playing something with a bit more variation and nuance in the drum department, showing he can do something besides blast away aimlessly, undoubtedly making for the most interesting part of this EP.
Along with the original material, we’re treated to both live and studio versions of the classic “Maze Of Torment” by Morbid Angel, which the band pulls off admirably considering tackling any MA tune is flirting with disaster. All of these tracks have made appearances on previous EPs (Evil Philosophies and Imperium), so the freshness of their upcoming full-length might be a little suspect, making me a little less than enthused about what’s to come. While doing nothing terribly wrong, they also don’t do anything very compelling, but this is still a fair indication of what they are and aren’t capable of achieving with what talents they do possess.
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