Games Meet Metal: Nachtmystium's Addicts: Black Meddle Part II: The Riff Review

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Thursday, July 1, 2010

Nachtmystium's Addicts: Black Meddle Part II: The Riff Review

As I've stated before, I'm not that knowledgeable in the world of black metal. My experience has grown greatly in the past couple months, but there's still a lot of it I don't get? Why are Emporer and Darkthrone so praised, yet sound like shit to me? Why does the stuff I do like, like Dimmu Borgir, get shit on for being symphonic? At least they're trying to be a bit different. Why can't everything just sound like 1349 or Watain?  This is the attitude I went into with Nachtmystium's Addicts: Black Meddle Part 2: wanting a bit of evolution in the music, but retaining some of what makes black metal so dynamic.

I should of known something was gonna be a bit different when I spied the spelling of "Meddle."

Meddle is, in fact, the title to a Pink Floyd record. Now, for me, Pink Floyd isn't just a band I like. Pink Floyd should forever have the slogan "Doesn't get much better than this" attached to them. They're one of the reasons I listen to more experimental and progressive metal bands. And of course, they wrote some of the most timeless hard rock that will survive long after we have all shuffled loose of the mortal coil. Which makes it all the more curious as to why a black metal band would go through the trouble of referencing them in their album. Turns out, like the Floyd, Nachtmystium loves playing around with psychedelic sounds.

Addict's first proper track, High on Hate, takes it's cues straight from the old school black metal handbook. Muffles guitars, piercing vocals, not-at-all nice things to say. All the things you expect a Norwegian metaller to say, just that this is by way of Chicago. The next track, Nightfall, really proves that we're nowhere near Oslo. It's practically a pop track. The hell?!?! Where's my damnation? My condemning of Chri- hold on. This is some catchy shit! Catchy? For a black metal song? This truly is uncharted territory.  Then, on No Funeral, the psychedelic sound kicks in hard. It's such a shock to hear it for the first time that you may want to check you iTunes queue to make sure no one slipped in Buffalo Springfield while you weren't watching.

The rest of Addicts plays like a mix of these elements: a grounding in black metal learnings, with a ton of songwriting sensibility and psychedelic tendencies to spice it all up. On paper, that looks like a pretty shitty recipe. Of course, there was a time when I felt that any black metal looked like shit on paper. Now I can appreciate it for what it was. But with Addicts, I can see a brighter future for it. One that doesn't need to slather corpse  paint all over itself so it can be br00tal. Just being different and taking chances with the established formula is pretty tr00 and kvlt in it's own right.

Nachtmystium's Addicts: Black Meddle Part II is out now all over the place. You can also head on over to CM Distro and snag yourself one of their package deals. I'm kid of digging that vinyl deal myself.

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