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Nokturnal Hellstorm – Nokturnal Hellstorm (2012) - 60%

Asag_Asakku, May 30th, 2012

It is quite by accident that I discovered the American band Nokturnal Hellstorm, whose creation is recent. After some checking, I find that this group is a side project of the stakhanovist Brutal Truth bassist Dan Lilker. He has indeed a well filled curriculum with several famous names, such as Anthrax and SoD, among (many) others. Our guy is nothing but a novice when it comes to black metal, as he was part of Hemlock for several years and played bass as a session musician for other groups. In short, the man knows its extreme music.

This year, Nokturnal Hellstorm is launching its first album, a clever pastiche of major European bands of the early 1990s, particularly those of the second wave. Trying to establish a complete list of all influences of the band would be tedious. I advise you to consult instead the directory of the 1992 Norwegian black metal groups. Indeed, the whole album sounds like a tribute and countless comparisons could be made. Even the production is intentionally minimalist, thus recreating the recording conditions of most classical Mayhem records, among others. This should still not diminish the guilty pleasure felt listening to this disc, though of course we try to go back twenty years back musically.

Some parts are very good, such as Vile Entropy or Eternal Wasteland, which could appear on a Burzum album. However, I wonder about the relevance of such a project. We can not already count the number of copycatting the dawn of black metal masters, so why not look instead to innovate? Bah! Whatever. If you proudly flaunt a patch of Darkthrone and if for you, all that was done after 1995 is worthless, then you can safely add to your collection the first album of Nokturnal Hellstorm. 6/10

Initially written for metalobscur.com