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Catchy, US tinged Italian Heavy Metal - 79%

DeathRiderDoom, May 23rd, 2009

Dark Lord - ‘It’s Nigh’ Time’

Dark Lord was a band from Venice Italy that played an often majestic brand of powery heavy metal that’s pretty great. They had a few releases, but are probably best represented by this pretty solid full-length, released in 1988. These guys are one of the first classic heavy metal bands from Italy I discovered, and I admit readily to raping this album a bit, when I first got it. Hence I kind of wore it out and stopped listening to it. Luckily that was a year ago and now it’s completely fresh again.

There’s a couple of standout out tracks on this album, such as ‘Bring it out at Night’ a chorus-reliant, chanty number with an almost US feel to it. Some well executed, emotive leads and an interesting layout make this one a winner. I enjoy the vocals in the chorus, which don’t sound weird or euro-trashy as can be the case with metal from France or Italy. Great song writing here.

The drums come through well on this release, for example in the slower Van Halenish ‘Fallin Off’. This melodic rock track is probably their most commercial sounding, but enjoyable all the same. I love the catchy chorus, which again has a distinctly US feel to it. Some good drum touches and a melodic guitar lead are standout elements here. The chanted chorus part, with heavily tom-laden drums are definite commercial hallmarks.

More ‘metal’ attitude is evidenced in the powerful title track ‘It’s Nigh’ Time’ (also in ‘Rockin’ to Feel Alright’). The spelling here is an interesting touch, though kinda puzzling. I notice this type of this happening often with Euro bands of the period – it’s pretty amusing. This one is a vocal showcase, displaying the talents of Emmanual Janee – I wish I could sing like this, really I do. As a vocalist and songwriter, I admire this stuff incredibly but fear ill never reach anything close to this standard, even though I try. Ha! This one has some thrashier touches throughout, and a majestic narrative – a definite winner.

The rest of the album is great including the powerful ‘One Night in the City’ (Didn’t Dio have a song called this, around the same period?) which has an almost Leatherwolf feel to the intro, and USPM sound in the verses. Songs are consistently strong and feature great yet simplistic guitar. All round a definite winner here – advisable for sure. I didn’t have too much trouble finding this, although fuck knows how I even heard of this band – couldn’t tell ya for the life of me. Headbanging moments galore such as ‘Rockin’ to Feel Alright’ and an interesting blend of sounds that is surprising given where the band hails from. Get this one if you like classic power/heavy metal.