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Nachtmystium - Resilient

by Chris Hawkins at 31 December 2018, 12:37 PM

It has been four years since Blake Judd and company made what most thought would be their swan song with “The World We Left Behind”.  Often when bands have a gap as such, they tend to lose creative momentum.  On the other hand, though, the elapsed time may have yielded a wealth of creativity.  “Resilient” thankfully seems to be a case for the latter.  The only issue is that one is left wanting more.  From a sales/marketing perspective, that is ideal.

The second track, “Conversion,” is really the first full-length song.  It has its own unique vibe while still comfortably residing along with the pantheon of NACHTMYSTIUM’s work.  Simply put, it has a slow groove, a meditative momentum regulated by huge, hanging guitar chords and expanded with melodic keyboards.  The keyboards have a traditional synth sound that hearkens back to the mid 1990s-era Black Metal, a vibe similar to some material by EMPEROR and BORKNAGAR (when Garm was still singing).  The sound is thick with every available space filled by instruments or vocals.  As it progresses toward the end, it only gets more entrancing.

Desert Illumination,” the final track begins with a trippy groove and more looming keyboards.  There is some experimentation with percussion as bongos can be heard in the background.  As is usually the case with this band, the bass has a distinct role, truly filling out the music with unique fills, runs, and arpeggios.  The keyboards use a Hammond organ sound throughout a large part of the song giving it a 1970s feel and acoustic guitars are employed as well.  Halfway through, they remind the listener that they are still a Black Metal band with a mesmerizingly haunting arpeggiated tremolo-picked riff.  The riff continues along changing chords while the bass effectively gallops underneath, poking its head up with the occasional embellishment.  The song is ended perfectly with energized fury and a mystical invocation of the gods.

Resilient” is the sound of a legendary, groundbreaking band ascending to the next level of maturity.  Though only four songs, it gives a fully focused representation of where they truly are creatively.  Blake Judd’s past issues seem to be confronted judging by the samples used and some of the lyrics that were discernible.  There is nowhere to go but forward and through acceptance and recognition of what happens in our past, we are able to then take the necessary steps to move on.  While a full-length would be ideal, it is reassuring to know the band is active again and the well of creativity has not run dry.  It is with eager anticipation that I’ll be awaiting the forthcoming material from the band.  For a band that has broken barriers as such, we are all privileged to witness the new standards they will continue to set.

Songwriting:  8
Originality:  9
Memorability:  8
Production:  8

4 Star Rating

1. Conversion
2. Resilient
3. Silver Lanterns
4. Desert Illumination
Blake Judd- Guitars, Lead Vocals
Joel Witte – Rhythm Guitar
Martin van Valkensijn – Bass, Effects, Backing Vocals
Job Phenex Bos – Keyboards, Effects
Record Label: Prophecy Productions


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Edited 08 June 2023

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