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Nuclear Winter - Greystone

Nuclear Winter
Greystone
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 23 April 2021, 2:09 PM

NUCLEAR WINTER is a Melodic/Industrial Death Metal project of Zimbabwean musician Gary Stautmeister. With no information in their press kit, and nothing on their Facebook or Bandcamp page, the only other information I know about the band is that “Greystone” is their third full-length, and contains nine tracks.

“The Wastelands” leads off the album. A head and heavy riff leads off the song, with clean vocals at first. There is also some welcomed background ambiance, giving it that Industrial edge. The second verse contains harsh vocals. It’s fairly one-dimensional, but also strong. “Stygian Awakening” opens with a steady picked guitar riff on the low E chord. Bass notes can also be heard. The keys give it an outer-worldly sound. I also like the trade off from harsh to clean vocals. It provides some life to the song. The lack of guitar solos really doesn’t take much away from the album.

“The Harvest Moon” begins with running bass notes that the guitars jump on. Some keys can be heard in the background as well. The guttural vocals are particularly nasty here. Cleans come in as a duet with the harsh. “Orwellian Future” begins with some rolling drums and a weighted guitar riff. Some lead notes also come into play, followed by harsh vocals. But four tracks in, and there isn’t much in the way of diversity. “Corridor of Shells” changes things up just a bit, with soaring leads in the opening. But it falls back onto that all-too familiar riff again. The guitar solo does provide some diversity, and the way the clean vocals are sung is harrowing.

“The Wavering Shadow” begins much in the same way as the other tracks. The songs do take you to an alternate universe but unfortunately, it’s the same trip every time. “Hidden Shrine” is really the first track that offers some variation. There is a cool swing to the opening riff, as well as some melodies that are more tangible. The keyboards are on point here as well. This melancholy song is just what the doctor ordered. “Graveyard Sculpture” is the shortest track on the album. It’s three minutes of barreling over doors and scorching the earth with its firey entrails. “The Falling Dawn” closes the album. It opens with clean vocals and keys under a bed of heavy guitars, bass, and drums. From there the murky waters get even a bit darker with the addition of harsh vocals.

Perhaps my biggest concern with the album was that almost every track was equal in length and sound. You will often hear me talk about the importance of diversity. Now, Industrial Metal doesn’t really lend itself to a whole lot of diversity, but getting off that open E chord and changing the pace here and there might help. Still, it’s a good album. That familiar heaviness is there, and the keys offer some diversity, as do the interplay from harsh to clean vocals. But shake things up a bit for the next album.

Songwriting: 7
Musicianship: 7
Memorability: 7
Production: 7

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. The Wastelands
2. Stygian Awakening
3. The Harvest Moon
4. Orwellian Future
5. Corridor of Shells
6. The Wavering Shadows
7. Hidden Shrine
8. Graveyard Sculpture
9. The Failing Dawn
Lineup:
Gary Stautmeister – Everything
Record Label: MMD Records
     


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