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Hallowed Be Thy Night (Goes On) - 75%

Sweetie, November 22nd, 2022

Upon discovery, Konquest didn’t really do a whole lot for me. It struck me as a well-executed brand of Iron Maiden and NWOBHM worship that was fine for a listen or so, but lacked staying power. Time And Tyranny then hit the scene, changing all of that, by capitalizing on their own identity and injecting loads of uplifting energy alongside the beefy riffs. This called for a revisit of the debut, The Night Goes On.

Structurally, this is almost identical, showing where the groundwork was laid. Opening on an instrumental, sticking one somewhere in the middle, and closing off with a longer tune becomes the game. Packing everything into eight songs of heavy metal establishes their classic brevity trick. Production wise, however, things feel a bit dry, which I would expect from a debut of an up-and-coming band anyway. Because of this the drums do feel a bit louder at times, jumping above the mix in heavier parts, which made a nice impact, intentional or not. See “Keep Me Alive”; its descent into the first verse is solid.

But I would be lying if I said The Night Goes On stuck much harder upon revisiting. Being stripped of anything original, its Iron Maiden influence is too on-the-nose. Again, being a great band to model off of, the whole ride is pleasant, but memorable songwriting feels far less obvious. Convincing leads take a strong priority, trading off with vocals that come through nicely. I also love that despite the aforementioned atmosphere, the bass is very present, shown in the gallops of “Too Late.” “Helding Back The Tears” also gives a taste of what’s to come with the emotion, which I greatly appreciate. But alternatively, the “The Vision” closer was a bit underwhelming, working as a repetitive song rather than several phases consolidated into one. It also doesn’t help that the solo-bridge is nearly identical to Maiden’s “Hallowed Be Thy Name.”

Perhaps I’m being nit picky with my criticisms, or maybe I’m subconsciously forcing this to measure up to their sophomore full-length. There is plenty to dig up, you just have to look a lot harder. It becomes tough to overlook certain aspects, but at the end of the day I would call this plenty serviceable.

Originally written for ToothAndNailed95.blogspot.com

Night goes up, night goes down - 80%

Demon Fang, January 29th, 2021

On the surface, Konquest’s The Night Goes On appears to be some straight-up NWOBHM-worship. A lot of the riffs have that Iron Maiden and Angel Witch kind of feel to them. You’ve those familiar gallops and core progressions that we all know and love bands like Satan for. Their... well, Alex Rossi’s love for the sound permeates throughout this entire album, as each note of each riff and vocal exchange is positively brimming with that Diamond Head goodness. Even as far in as the fucking intro riff to the intro song, “Theme of the Konqueror”, you’ve already borne witness to those harmonics endemic in the NWOBHM sound. As much as it would be a poor man’s modernization of a classic sound under less capable hands, The Night Goes On tends to come across a lot more like one man’s loving tribute to a sound he really liked.

It’s an album that gives you songs that feel familiar yet fresh. You get the bouncy “The Night Goes On”, the street jammer in “Too Late”, and the “Hallowed Be Thy Name”-esque epic in “The Vision”. Songs like them would sound like real tribute fodder if not for Rossi’s commanding tone. Not just in his air siren vocals, but also in his dedication towards the art of the riff. Every riff is played with the kind of gusto that, if you roughed up the production a bit, would fit in quite well with what was coming out during the early-80s. Not only that, but also then stand quite tall in 2021. Just the way each note of each riff play off one another creates these strong melodies that flow magnificently from one another. Just the way Rossi reigns in his vocal technique to create these hooky lines, helped by his bellowing presence, gives the songs that extra bit of melodic edge. Often, it’s as if Rossi’s got like two or even three separate hooks going on at once!

This particularly shows in “The Night Goes On” and “Fall of the Konqueror”. The former is a ridiculously catchy joint, given its bopping rhythm and licks accentuating that intro riff. Not to mention, the galloping chorus. “WO-AH! THE NIGHT GOES ON”, indeed. The latter is a real Killers-esque instrumental, largely due to the interplay between the bass and guitars being quite similar to how Iron Maiden did it on that album with songs like “Wrathchild” and “Killers”. These songs are the highlights of the album, but don’t get it mistaken – the other songs are good times. Lots of NWOBHM-inspired goodness found in these twin-guitar harmonics and smooooooth basslines, juxtaposed by some slick riffcraft. So, riffs, bass and commanding vocals – connect it now, on The Night Goes On!