Sunday, August 30, 2015

NOCTERNITY - Harps of the Ancient Temples (2015)

In a world of constant releases from Orthodox black metal bands that dumb down Deathspell Omega to an unlistenable point, and ‘war’ metal bands that spend ten minutes on writing each of their albums yet somehow maintain persistent praise, a dose of kingly and elegant black metal from the heartland of Greece is an appropriate remedy.

Nocternity from Greece present us with an atmospheric black metal album akin to early works of Burzum but injected with a Hellenic flair of melodic heavy metal sensibility. Pulsing rhythms pilot these riffs through several contemplations that express one dominant theme: loss.

Harps of the Ancient Temples radiates a feeling of tragic nostalgia; something that one longs for, something that has been missing for too long, and something that can never return. Like a pagan kingdom sacked by a religiously-inspired army, reaping their history in favor of a new era. This is expressed musically by austere melodic riffing that brings to mind the majestic landscapes of the old kingdom, now distant and unreachable.

Being mostly mid-tempo, Harps of the Ancient Temples is an album that takes its time, basking in its own dismal atmosphere, and welcomes you into the gates of a poignant memory.

This album can be purchased via Iron Bonehead records.

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