Wow what a gem this album is, it took me completely by surprise, this is some of the coolest and weirdest stuff I have heard, ever, period! Reading the info sheet that came with this, the reissue of Night to Die's Ep and demos got me very interested, since it states and I quote "Imagine an hybrid between DEATH & ORPHANED LAND, but with flamenco feeling". And yes folks, this is exactly what we get, and boy is it cool, it' is like I am on a rollercoaster and I have gotten my drink spiked. You never know where these fine fellows are going with their songs and what they have waiting around the bend.
So what I'm talking about is a reissue by Xtreem music of Night To Die's demos from 95 and 97 and their All Evil Crying Ep from 99. Night To Die plays death metal in the vein of the two bands I mentioned in the quote, so what we get is technical/progressive death metal the way it sounded in the mid 90s, but if you think that these guys sound like the many Death clones that spawned in the mid to late 90s, oh no, sure there is a very strong resemblance in the riffing, drumming, bass playing and vocals, ok so basically everything, but there are so many twists and turns in the songs that it is mind bending. I don't know if I ever have been so entertained by an album, I got totally lost in it. It is like you are banging along to a sweet riff and then all of a sudden some middle eastern chanting comes in, some awesome flamenco parts, piano, choir part or weird vocal parts. In some songs there are also a sort of a Iron Maiden vibe going on, and that just adds to the feeling of "what the fuck", check out the song Lust for some Maiden epicness. It feels like these guys really had fun while they were creating their music, because it really put a smile on my face.
Sound wise the recordings sound similar, I did not even notice when the Ep songs ended and the demo songs started. The sound might not be top notch by today's standards, but it is pretty damn good. Especially if you consider that some of this stuff was demos done in the mid 90s. I like this kind of sound very much, it is in no way raw, it is just not over produced. You can hear that this has a few years on its neck, but that just adds to the charm. What I think sounds best on this album is the drums sound and the Spanish guitar (just listen to the little interlude Into the Eye, wow) because both instruments sounds gorgeous, and the playing, well, read the next paragraph.
The playing on this album is hands down breath taking, everyone is a master of their respective craft. And of course if you are playing Death inspired stuff you sort of have to be. The drumming is technical with a lot of cool stops, small breaks, tempo changes and general groove. The beat is generally mid paced to slow, there are some faster parts, but not that many. The bass playing is tight and I have to say fun, since this is the way bass playing is supposed to be if you ask me, the bass is often going out on its own and doing its own thing, and there are bass breaks and solos scattered all over this album. And what is great is that the bass is high in the mix, so you don't have to take residence in your speaker to hear it, since that would be both kind of a pain in the ass and also a bit sad since there are so many cool bass parts on these recordings. For example the bass solo track Autumn, which to my ears sounds like the rest of the guys told the bass player just to go nuts. The main growling vocals are similar to Chuck from Death, but maybe a tad lower. But there are many voices on this album, clean chants and just plain weird stuff. I guess I have to point out that some of the clean vocals are not that great, they are rather out of key at times ( I do not mean the middle eastern sounding chants thou), just so I don't sound like a total fan boy.
I feel that this kind of record could easily have become tiresome or "too much", like so many albums that have been stuffed with so many elements. But no, not this one, I just want to hear more, and what is especially remarkable is that this is a compilation of three different releases, so it is not like they planned out the weirdness and placed it evenly on the record so the listener would not get totally confused. Nope, this is a three course meal of weird awesomeness, and it all works together, simply stunning. And after finishing the full 66 min of it all, I pressed play, again, because this is just that great and I hope you will check it out, right now, so do it right now, and, have a nice day!
Sweden`s Wilhelm Lindh*, "Portuguese by adoption," guitar player, composer and owner of the Doom / Death Metal band The Gardnerz, reviews here in HeavyHardMetalmania.net. Careful and professional analysis to the music and albums with suggestions of what there is to see and hear ... not to be missed. "The wisdom is found in the extremes, all extreme Metal here!".
Re-issue of all the stuff recorded by this genius band that plays a technical and melodic Death Metal even with Doom hints that blended flamenco elements in an unique and masterly way, creating something genuine. Imagine an hybrid between DEATH & ORPHANED LAND, but with flamenco feeling. Includes their mini CD from '99 and the two demos from '95 & '97. A total of 12 songs in 65 min. of pure genius!! Melodic Flamenco Death Metal MASTERPIECE "Non Omnis Moriar" can be found in Xtreammusic.