posted on 1/2011 By:
Nadiwrath hails from the City of Athena in Greece, consisting of Dodsferd mastermind Wrath on vocals and Nadir of Stellar Darkness on guitars (hence the name: Nadir - R + Wrath = Nadiwrath). The band blends the first two waves of black metal—most notably early Mayhem and Darkthrone—with a punk-fueled aesthetic and additional heaps of Celtic Frost groove. Despite drawing from some legendary source material, debut full-length Nihilistic Stench more often than not finds itself bogged down in repetition, overly-lengthy tracks and largely directionless songwriting.
Several tracks on Nihilistic Stench see the band following a general formula of punky black metal half-riffing that repeats ad nauseum without achieving any sort of atmosphere, often joined by plodding, semi-dirges during which Wrath takes on a tortured, suicidal vocal mode. “Another Pimping Whore” is a perfect example of how the band uses this style to their advantage only to drive it into the ground. It contains an especially intense bridge and is the only track on which their punk attitude is truly believable, but at over 5 and a half minutes it loses both its intensity and its grip on the listener.
Other songs employ a more traditional black metal style complete with tremolo harmonies and blast beats, often with far greater—albeit temporary—results than the black/punk tunes. Greater results because Nadiwrath wrote some actual riffs for these songs and are obviously more accomplished at the style; temporary because, like the attitudinal tunes, these wear out their welcome. For example, “There Is No Light” features some very nice tremolo riffage and near-Trym drum chaos, but goes on for almost 8 minutes with really only about 5 minutes worth of material, and as a result sounds very lost at times. This, like several other songs, will draw the listener in only when the main riffs are going on, becoming background noise during other parts. The band’s lack of editing ability is especially frustrating on album finale “Memories Are Dead,” a song that reveals Nadiwrath is be quite skilled at their riff-craft when they set their rotten minds to it, but again being drawn to unnecessary lengths.
Nihilistic Stench is a near-50-minute album that should have been cut to sub-35 while retaining the same number of tracks. Nadiwrath makes a decent enough first impression, and they occasionally write a wildly cool section, but their overall songwriting needs some serious refinement and trimming before this warrants any kind of real recommendation. In short, there is simply too much good black metal being written and released for this to be necessary.
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