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Nanga Parbat - Downfall And Torment Award winner

Nanga Parbat
Downfall And Torment
by Andrew Harvey at 11 May 2021, 7:47 AM

Downfall and Torment is the brand new debut album by the progressive death metal band known as Nanga Parbat who formed in 2019. This band comes from the metal scene in Italy and other parts of continental Europe. The band name is derived from the mountain known as “Killer Mountain” which is found in the Himalayas. No doubt the italian translation of killer mountain is very well suited to this group as I will look closely at, Downfall and Torment, which was released last month in April through Slipstick Records.

The intro to this album, begins with “The Edge Of An Endless Waterfall”, is a very well produced track with acoustic guitar riffs. The plucks of each string gives that classical guitar embellishment with the addition of string accompaniment (violin or fiddle perhaps). “Through A Lake Of Damnation” with cutting edge guitar riffs with that progressive sound to the tone and tempo of the song. The drums by Galati that kick in with cymbal hits highlight the guitar melody with the grunt or growl of Petruzzi’s vocals. The pairing up of two vocal lines attracts my attention and this track has the driving force of low end guitars, progressive drumming and sharp vocals is braced together by the subtle bass notes played by Sandri.

“Blood, Death And Silence”, we hear more stunning classical guitar picks, also raging guitar solos and high pitched notes with thumping drum beats and vocals that give off the themes of almighty rage or violence. The merging of sliding movements of guitar and excerpts of drumming which compliment the guitar effects that are quick setting the tempo which changes so the overall quality is just sublime.

“Tidal Blight” like the first track opens up with another orchestrated arrangement of percussion, strings and classical guitar along with the repetition of guitar effects. “Demon In The Snow” exposes the classical style again with chords on the piano leading the way for drums, guitar and bass to kick start the crescendo of what we heard before, the backing of chorale voices accompanying the rhythm section with demonic vocals.

A sense of righteousness and awesome glory of what is heard makes the album complete with further tracks such as “Obscure Rain” with electric and classical styled guitar on top of more fist pumping drums and bass guitar. The contrast between the two vocal lines is remarkable and the overdrive of guitar also adds colour and tonal quality. “Curse Of The Thaw”, continues to express the dark and haunting themes we heard before, with a psychedelic approach for guitar, that we hear from different points of the audio spectrum.

The tempo varies as well going into the next track, “Downfall An Torment”, the intro of classical piano glides the rhythm of this track smoothly into an explosion of what we heard before with aggressive drumming, superb guitar riffs, string arrangement and additional layers of guitar before vocals come in later on. This track lasts approximately 12 and a half minutes signalling the dark, fantastic songwriting and the backing of all instruments making their mark with solos within this penultimate track of the album. Finally we come to a close with the echoes of guitar, drums and vocals delivered so well from the previous track, that it is concluded for a final encore of all instruments.

The angelic chorale voices in the background are prolonged. “Breath Of The Northern Winds” the very last track on this album are purely represented by the electrifying guitar solos as the peace or serenity gives us one last hurrah ending with a descending guitar clip. All I can say now is that this was an incredible album, loved all the guitar solos and the drumming is underestimated compared to the other instruments but the classical elements are memorable. I do appreciate this album for what it says to me and it certainly is empowering, extraordinary and exquisite.

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 10
Memorability: 10
Production: 10

5 Star Rating

1. The Edge Of An Endless Waterfall
2. Through A Lake Of Damnation
3. Blood, Death And Silence
4. Tidal Blight
5. Demon In The Snow
6. Obscure Rain
7. Curse Of The Thaw
8. Downfall And Torment
9. Breath Of The Northern Winds
Andrea Pedruzzi - Growl and Clean Vocals
Flavio Cicconi - Electric Guitar/Acoustic Guitar
Edoardo Sterpetti - Electric Guitar/Orchestration
Enrico Sandri - Bass Guitar
Giulio Galati - Drums
Record Label: Sliptrick Records


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Edited 01 February 2023

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