June 23, 2009

Nachtmystium - Assassins: Black Meddle Pt. 1 (2008)

I started listening to Chicago based Nachtmystium with the release of their album Demise in 2004. Black metal in the US has been lacking to say the least, but in the last 5 years, it truly has developed its own style, and is starting to really kick ass. Assassins is a new invention of what can be called black metal, and I love it. Nachtmystium has (without subtlety) created an album that mimes Pink Floyd's, Meddle. The opening track, "One of these nights" is a grim take on the classic Meddle opener, "One of these days". With the start of the album, I get galloping guitars that lead into the 8 minute 2nd track, "Assassins" which is a thrashy black metal song that strays away from the norm with sparse riffs. The track ends with marching boots and sound effects that belong on Sabbath's Vol.4. From there, the album brings me up and down with solid black metal songs, but so many experimental full blown psychedelic jams that leave me wanting more. The first half of the album really has a good deal of black metal in it, hidden in tracks that pulse with a fluid forward motion. The second half of the album gets really psychedelic, with only one 'true' black metal track, "Omnivore" that is by far and wide the most brutal track on the album. The album ends with an epic three part opus, "Seasick". The entire three part track feels like I am floating in water, and defiantly gives my neighbors something to laugh at, as i play air guitar and headbang in front of my window for a solid 11 minutes. Throughout the entire album the same lyrics are sung over and over again that give me a very complete/fluid feel to the album. The songwriting of the band, the drums of Tony Laureano, and the brutal vocals of Blake Judd get me so stoked on listening to upcoming releases. If you take nothing else from this review take these 3 things:

In a genre of music founded upon satanism, suicide, murder, cannibalism, corpse paint, and church burning; we have this album..... which has a fucking saxophone solo, and I'm into it.

If you are into black metal, this album will open your eyes to the endless possibilities of the genre, and expand your perception of metal.

If you aren't into black metal, buy this album. Sit down. Listen to it in its entirety, uninterrupted, and be prepared to have a serious black metal problem in the future. If hardcore black metal is heroin, this is your weed that'll inevitably make you a drug addict.


awmercy said...

I really like your last point. I may have to sample this gateway drug.