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It's all in the details - 92%

Dechristianizer, December 31st, 2009

Nile is without doubt one of the best and most acclaimed death metal acts around today. Over the years they have treated us to some astonishingly well-composed- and played death metal and Those Whom the Gods Detest is no exception.

This album grows. And just when you thought it couldn't get any bigger, you find some new stuff in there you hadn't paid attention to before. There are so insanely many details in each song that it takes spin after spin to find them all. This, in my opinion, is what defines the metal that lies on top of good metal. It's not just interesting the first 15 spins. It keeps clawing you back in for another spin.

George's drumming is insanely precise and well-performed. I don't know what planet this man comes from, but after being blasted away at well over 260bpm for several minutes it's hard to believe that what he does is actually possible. But of course it is. He plays his signature fast drumming with kickdrum controlled fills, but he also perfects the more seemingly slow paced passages where he makes good use of, among other things, his extra snaredrum to create this sense of varied rhythms within an otherwise insanely fast pattern. I guess you could say that he has reached speeds so high, that without accentuation on the different drums and cymbals, it would almost sound like one tone.

The guitar work of Karl and Dallas is stellar to say the least. Several places the use of these tiny melodic twists at the end of a riff is what seems to inject that "egyptian" feel to it all. Combined this with the atmospheric solos and melodies spread throughout the album and you have something that feels both unique and familiar at the same time. I don't know how they do it, but somehow Nile always ends up sounding fresh and new, even though the formula essentially has been the same from the very beginning of the bands' career. To mention one particular melodic passage that excites me everytime i hear it, it must be the simple, yet immensely fitting melody at 1:33 in "Permitting The Noble...".

The vocals of Dallas and Karl are another gem on this album. Most memorable is the chanting at 6:08 in "4th Arra..." and at 1:57 of the title track - but generally Dallas' vocal work is once again one of the ingredients that makes this album become more than mere death metal mixed with egyptian themes. His vocals actually sound as if they were spoken by the ancient egyptians and then send to the future to be recorded onto this album. I don't know what it is exactly, but the way each sentence is delivered - the punch, the pitch, the almost snarling nature of it is just brilliant.

Lastly, there is the one thing that ties everything together which is, of course, Karls' egyptian themed acoustic arrangements. He is a master of creating the glue that makes each song stand out. Whether it to create diversity with an intro as heard on the title track or the chanting at the end of "Kafir!", which is later followed up in the all-acoustic track "Yezd Desert Ghul...", it all serves to tie the record together into the masterpiece that it is.

Ultimately, it is all in the details. If you haven't heard this album yet, give it a spin. And then give it another spin, and another and so on and so forth. I promise you, you will find new stuff to appreciate with each play-through.