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Fair assessment of an album is a delicate task that requires time and patience, especially when expectations are high. It is in this spirit that I approach Norwegian Nidingr’s newest effort, a band I discovered in 2005 when it released its first album. With strong and experienced musicians, it was able to develop its own musical identity, especially highlighted on Wolf-Father. However, Greatest of Deceivers is less convincing.
Album’s underlying concept seemed promising. Built around an occult theme (title’s first letters are spelling « GOD »), lyrics are denouncing Christian god as an impostor and dedicate his work to public obloquy. However, despite a carefully designed general concept, the music fails to properly support it.
Album starts smoothly with the title track, crossing black, death and thrash metal. Cpt. Estrella Grasa’s voice also clearly belongs to the latter musical registry, words remaining audible although screamed. Several good riffs punctuate this song, which also has a good rhythm and bass lines that stand out and add some weight. Then it spoils.
Despite a large number of plays, I’m still not hooked to this record. By second song, the band seems to run out of ideas and song writing suffers from it. Rhythm becomes hesitant, riffs lack originality and bite. There are some creativity flashes on some tracks, but we always get this persistent “already heard” feeling that quickly causes boredom.
Greatest of Deceivers is an album that suffers from stylistic hesitations of its authors. Musically closer to thrash than black metal, it hardly keeps pace and multiplies tasteless filling sequences. I admit being disappointed with this result, however designed by Teloch, a performer for whom I have tremendous respect. I hope that Nidingr will make adjustments on its next album, because the most recent will take dust on my shelf.
Originally written for Métal Obscur.