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Nox Aeterna – The Desperation Deal

Nox Aeterna
The Desperation Deal
by Omnius D'Worgen at 18 May 2015, 1:06 PM

As with many other things in life, credentials are important – who's talking is many times more important that what they're saying. F'rinstance, I really don't like Melodic Death Metal. I think that as a genre it is mostly stale and boring, with only a few bands managing to capture my interest in any significant way. I've told you that, first of all because I think we've reached that level in our relationship – but also because when I say I've enjoyed Dutch band NOX AETERNA's fourth release immensely, I want you to grasp to full meaning of my words.

"The Desperation Deal" is a concept album telling the story of two warriors and their battle against demons – something you'd expect to see in a Power Metal album, but it works. The album is unsurprisingly very atmospheric in nature, and is as much a work of storytelling as a work of music – changes in atmosphere and pace do not come only from the lyrics or from the vocalist alone, but from changes in the music itself – which results in a very interesting continuous and unified piece, whether you follow the story or not.

Boukes and Maasdam work vocals and two guitars together amazingly, complimenting each other and working with the keys and rhythm section to set a very strong atmosphere and to generate strong images in your mind – a very hard-to-explain trait of music you really connect with, in my experience. Playing-wise, every instrument is very well played – with here and there the slight inaccuracies I so love to hear, those telltale signs of a real person on the other end of the speaker playing their hearts out. I mentioned guitars in passing, but I'll get back to 'em just this once to say I enjoyed the guitar solos quite a lot – very melodic passages that go extremely well with the music, every part as it should with no attempts at pointless shredderry.

All-in-all, this is a very well-rounded and well-made album (even more impressive since they produced it all themselves). It brought me hope for a genre I thought was long lost to me – I think it's time you took a listen as well.

4 Star Rating

1. The Impending Threat To A Legacy
2. Restless Vigilance
3.  Blinded By Ruthless Envy
4.  Einarr's Remembrance
5. The Sick Awakening
6. Food For The Masses
7.  First Encounter With Obscurity
8.  The Becoming Of A Perfect Disease
9.  Incipience Of A Legacy
10.  Conscious Creation
11.  Resurrection: Impossible Perception
12.  Loathe The Incertitude
13.  Two-sided Setback
14. The Foreseeing Of Failure
15. Raanah's Endgame
Arnold Boukes – Guitar & Vocals
Debbie Maasdam – Guitar
Erik de Beijer – Bass
Gerard Baai – Keys
James Koppelaar – Drums
Record Label: Independent


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Edited 01 April 2023

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