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Northern Genocide – Genesis Vol. 666

Northern Genocide
Genesis Vol. 666
by Santiago Puyol at 28 August 2019, 1:05 AM

Finnish Industrial Metal band NORTHERN GENOCIDE was formed in 2010 in Helsinki. They released their first EP, "Planet Asylum", in 2015, and they are debuting on full album format with "Genesis Vol. 666" on Aug. 30, 2019. The band plays heavily onto the electronic side of Industrial Metal, bringing a strong synth element to their songwriting, while keeping things heavy with crushing riffs and harsh vocals.

After a brief intro of weird noises and unintelligible whispers, the album truly gets started with its title track. "Genesis Vol. 666" comes into its own with the beat of a staccato drum while guitars and synthesizers generate an oppressive atmosphere. A catchy chorus slips over a bed of synths while gang vocals are used in a very theatrical way. Meanwhile, "Black Widow" uses female vocals as a counterpoint to Tommi Salonen's high-pitched harsh vocals and deep growls.

"Black Widow" also highlights the role of drummer Markku Tuuri, in the midst of a brutal blast beats assault. A similar trick is used in the NINE INCH NAILS-inspired "The Siren", where Tuuri makes his drum kit sound like a machine gun, after sampling a weapon about to fire. He also knows how to settle into a groove, as he does so in the catchy "Annihilation of the World of Spirits" or the dramatic "Sintropolis".

"Neon Antichrist" is one of the highlights of the album. Its synthesizers provide a horror movie vibe, something that Northern Genocide repeats a couple of times throughout the record. The orchestrations on "Antichrist" appeal to the theatrical side of the band, while Pyry Pohjanpalo shines with a noisy guitar solo.

A sound closer to Progressive Metal appears in "Eclipse", with its clean guitar passages and atmospheric synthesizers. "Soul Dystopia" introduces more of the horror movie soundtrack feel with a piano ostinato that the guitar quickly repeats, an interesting little compositional trick that helps to build tension.

"The Avalanche" doesn't add much new to the album, although it sounds just as good. The aforementioned "Sintropolis" is based on a syncopated, dance-inspired synth pattern. With a remarkable guitar layering, use of dramatic choirs and more female vocals it acquires a particular place in the album, standing out.

The closer, "Ikiruoste", concludes the album at a high point with its dramatic synths. After an atmospheric breakdown at about two and a half minutes, it settles into a slower, more meditative rhythm. With a nostalgic sound, it does not take long to burst into another explosive solo, after tearing some wailing shrieks off the guitar.

Northern Genocide delivers an intricate yet never too complex album with "Genesis Vol. 666". It’s a diverse, well-produced album with some remarkable songwriting and a very creative approach to this kind of stuff, managing to be both intense and heavy as well as catchy and accessible. This is simply a banger.

Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Memorability: 7
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. Intro
2. Genesis Vol. 666
3. Black Widow
4. Annihilation of the World of Spirits
5. Neon Antichrist
6. Eclipse
7. The Siren
8. Soul Dystopia
9. The Avalanche
10. Sintropolis
11. Ikiruoste
Tommi Salonen – Vocals
Pyry Pohjanpalo – Guitars
Markku Tuuri – Drums
Jussi Pulliainen – Bass
Rainer Pekkinen – Production
Record Label: Inverse Records


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