Date: November 27th, 2020
Each time I open my mail box and find a package with CDs inside I feel like a child in a candy store. So as this time. Although I never know what is inside, but my postman does, since he always opens my mail first (yeah, in Serbia there is no privacy at all), the uncertainty is sweeter. This time I got the debut EP of Spanish death metal band Nihilrage.
After reading the promo sheet, my online investigation started. From what I have in my hands and what I have found online, just led me to the confusion. After I finally put the CD in my CD player, the confusion was at its peak. What am I talking about here exactly? Cover art I got I like more than the one I have found online. Whether they changed it in the meantime, whether they have not, I really do not care, because what I got is what I like. Black and white graphic, lot of skulls, dark wood, a horned beast with an ax in one hand and decapitated head and bucket in another, dead animals in bushes and thorns… Another confusion… The way their music is described for me is debatable, so I will just put that piece of paper aside and rely on my ears.
Guys from Tudela, Navarra, Spain, deliver short intro and four songs. Soft, and I will say beautiful intro (it is an epithet that we can never use in the same sentence with the term death metal, not in a million years), leads us into the world of something I expected will be more aggressive. With solid production, the guys deliver a mid tempo album with good solo parts, headbanging riffs, solid vocal performance and adequate lyrical themes. But, if you expected blasting grinding, sorry, you will not find it here. For my personal taste, this might be more furious, more aggressive, with less headbanging parts, more solos and aggressive riffs involved, maybe adding some scream vocals. Don’t get me wrong, this is just a constructive critique or an idea since the album is in progress, I hope. Overall, great foundation, just a bit more construction work, and this is the band that will build a great future.
The first single “Eternal Condemnation” is the most aggressive song, so looking from my perspective, good choice as a prelude to what Spanish crew will serve on EP. Personal favorite is “Human Waste”, a song that should be the determinant of the band’s future, lyrically and in every other aspect.
By the time I already wrote this review, guys from Blood Fire Death were kind enough to solve the cover art mystery. We’ll let them tell their story, interesting and useful for the band’s biography. At the end, from my side, it will be more than enough to say the new album cover still kept a dark forest motif in the foreground, with a creepy appearance in the distance.
In these crazy times, if you are working on a debut album, use your time wise, at least time is what you have on your side. Looking forward to see what the future will bring to Nihilrage.