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There are three words that could be used to describe Inquinok. Those words are: Enchanting, Inspirational, and Dark. So many bands have forgotten that those words are a part of which builds black metal. Instead today I see more and more bands being formed with the ideology of hatred and racism. Which in a sense is fine if its what they want to do, but Inquinok stray away from these recent trends and create a form of music that is nothing shy of mystical.
Shadows Amongst the Moonlight is a 4 song demo recorded within two time periods. The first three songs are recorded with differant members then the last, with the first three representing the Inquinok lineup as it somewhat appears today. Check the info here on Metal-Archives to view the lineups.
The demo starts off with the song Excidium which is my personal favorite. The guitar riffs sound somewhat like early Emperor, with the opening riff reminding me of the main guitar riff in "I am the Black Wizards". While the keyboards give off a feeling of enchantment like you would find on Satyricon's "Dark Medieval Times". The keyboards are obviously present, but are used in a way to create atmosphere rather then a bunch of wanking like you would find on a Dimmu Borgir album. Which makes this a great album for the "raw" black metal listener, and the symphonic groups. The blending of both styles is perfect. Each song on the album can show this.
Each member shows off talent in this group. Krelians vocal range is really impressive. He uses typical "high pitched" vocals for the most part, but now and then will give you a haunting deep growls of despair. It really sets the mood and can consume your thoughts with its presence and take you into another plain of existence.
The guitars are amazing. Performed by Krelian and Andrew, there are lots of tremolo picking melodys which is an essential in black metal. One thing that sticks out with guitars though in Inquinok is that they actually have guitar solos to their songs. The guitar solo's are very well thought out and lift the spirits of the music and in a sense puts you in total harmony.
The bass however is almost not even there, like you would find in many black metal recordings. Now i've seen this band live many times, and I can tell the bassist is very good at what he does using his fingers to do the tremolo picking instead of a guitar pick. However in this demo, I hardly ever notice the bass at all.
The drumming on the demo though is great, Tyburn can really blast the fuck out of the skins on his drums, while doing intricate footwork on the double bass. Theres plenty of differant fills and rolls that are incorporated into the music to switch it up instead of just a constant blast beat the whole time. My only gripe is that his bass drums are too quiet
As noted before, the keyboards on this demo are used in a matter to create atmosphere. Very well thought out, and they don't over power the music and become a main focus.
All in all, this is a great demo from a great band that loves and takes time into the music they write. Production quality is what you would expect from a demo, though leagues above most black metal band's demos that sound more like noise then music. One thing though that is annoying, is the sudden quality change on the last song of the album. Since it was recorded at a differant time, it came out differant. Sounding alot louder then all the other songs on the demo. If your not expecting it, it can really startle you if your blasting this in your headphones.
Definately pick up this demo.