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With a name like Die Hard, you wouldn't really come to expect much from this act, but perhaps you should. Nihilistic Vision is not the band's first release, though it's their first full-length recording, and it deserves much more attention then it has. Creating a rather nostalgic Thrash-fueled Death Metal assault, Die Hard really do put themselves on the map with this furious release.
Nihilistic Vision may start with the typical Satan-worship band introduction of words in reverse and the hailing of Satan (literally) before the music of this track kicks you in the face, this release is far from standard in any essence. Clearly taking inspiration from bands like Slayer and Vader without coming off as complete idolizing whores, the band paints an intense portrait through heavy as hell Thrash riffs with killer Death Metal distortions and drum work, weaving hatred and Death through ever song on here. "Bloody War" is a prime example of this, utilizing heavy, faster riffs, and then a group chanting chorus that will be lodged into your brain for ages. The title track, "Nihilistic Vision" is superb as well, really bringing in some classic Thrash elements, including a higher pitched shout that actually fits the music and isn't over the top, even if it does feel a bit strained. But, that doesn't matter since the song will be blasting through your speakers thanks to the sheer intensity of the music from start to insane finish.
There's also plenty of diversity to be found on this one. While some of the tracks do kind of sound similar, they focus moreso on being very heavy and catchy, which all works out in the end. The others do stand out from one another dramatically, such as "Bloody War", "Mercenaries Of Hell", the infectiously catchy "Ride The Incubus", and the absolutely furious "Attack From The Back", each holding their own brand of intensity by either the tempo or structure of the music, or due to the sheer speed and fury of the music itself. The only one that really isn't too stand outish on this release would be the closing track "Death Chasing The Flock Of Mortals", having a bit of a more stereotypical sound to it, but lyrically the song is great, and fits perfectly considering the building of the release, still making for this track to be highly enjoyable without any repetition during the entire eight minutes.
What else is there to say? The only aggrivating bit is the stereotypical introduction to the album to kick off "Into The Desolate Halls Of Death" on this one. Nihilistic Vision is a very impressive album that any metal fan needs to hear. The album picks up intensity right from the start, and ends on the highest note possible with "Attack From The Back" and "Death Chasing The Flock Of Mortals", giving the feel of a blistering climax, and ending with resolution, and perhaps one of the greatest song titles since "Skull Full Of Maggots". The production is great, the music is heavy and tight, and there's plenty of diversity to go around to keep this album fresh for many listens in the future, making this one of the must have albums of the year.
Originally posted on December 13th, 2009 at Apoch's Metal Review