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Theatre Nocturne - Depictions Of Life And Death

Theatre Nocturne
Depictions Of Life And Death
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 25 February 2014, 1:17 AM

THEATRE NOCTURNE is an unsigned Horror / Melancholy Metal band from Buffalo, NY.  Previous to this newest album, the band released an EP in 2012 entitled “Anhedonia”. They are a five piece act.  This newest album “Depictions of Life and Death” contains six tracks.

The opening instrumental track, “Dreams of a Scarlet Paradise”, has a mischievous and evil quality to it, complete with haunting background sounds, as if you were in a church when a demon was unexpectedly summoned and you had no way out. It is a tone setting track for what is to come. “The Sordid Reflection” is the first track with vocals. I hear a mix of Black and Death Metal, with some Thrash qualities, under the earnest yearnings of vocalist Justin Foley. His anguished screams drive the sound of the band, and when he hits the upper ranges the screeching is reminiscent to me of DIMMU BORGIR. “Immortal Savage Nature” is the next track up, opening with a bombastic and galloping beat, as energetic as the first track, and similar in pace. There isn’t a lot of variation in the delivery of the riffs so far and overall a fairly linear sound. Like a soundtrack to a haunted house, the idea I believe here is unsettling, charged, evil sounding music, heightening your sense of the macabre.

Track four, “Throne”, continues in the style so far. Percussion takes a front seat in this piece, with a furious and varied pace throughout. Some of the blast beat sections are just mind-bogglingly quick. Lead guitar fills tossed in here and there make for a pleasing addition to the overall sound and add some depth. “Indiscernible Will” continues advancing the album in the same manner as the earlier tracks. I would not call the music very dynamic, but there are moments. Rather, I believe the vision of the album is uncompromising, dark, straightforward Black / Death Metal, to the extreme. Closing the album is a track entitled “Above the Mist Themes of Sorrow Whisper”. I like the slow, grinding riff and the guitar harmonies that accentuate it, and believe this is my favorite song on the album. It’s a little more complex and shifts nicely between some riff and meter changes.

The musicianship of the band is solid. They fit together snugly, and have a good sense of timing.  It is clear to me that their approach to the songwriting was to keep it simple and within the integrity of the genre. There isn’t much experimentation here. This is not meant to be a criticism, only an observation.  There is certainly no holding back or any pretention to their effort though, and I would want to hear more of what is to come of the band in the future. 

3 Star Rating

1. I Rot Inside
2. Blood Breed
3. Red Sands
4. The Ascent
5. Intravenous Black
6. We are the Hunt
7. Promise of Carnage
8. Warspite
Justin Foley - Vocals
Erik Wagonblott – Guitars
Kenny Zotara – Guitar
Justin Herzog – Bass
Mike Paquette - Drums
Record Label: Independent


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