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Nice makeup, precious - 22%

Cheeses_Priced, July 9th, 2007

Nortt sounds like a cross between funeral doom and black metal, and that is all Nortt sounds like. There is no aspect of Nortt’s music that does not directly inherit from the stereotypes of one or both of these genres.

For example: vocals are a high-pitched rasp and could surely pass as black metal vocals, but they are delivered at a relatively quiet volume, like a low-key funeral doom band such as Skepticism. Dual guitars are utilized after the manner of Disembowelment – one downtuned, one lead – but the lead plays melodies that adhere precisely to the standards set by Norwegian black metal, down to the fine print. Drumming is patterned after the straightforward, minimalist funeral doom style of percussion. Periodically some ambient interludes break up/add to the monotony, which is typical of both funeral doom and black metal, although these resemble black metal more closely.

And so on and so forth. Every last cliché is imitated precisely, with the ear of a master parodist. One can imagine a fledgling Nortt tossing and turning in bed, desperate to find some inspiration for his band. But suddenly – inspiration strikes! He sits straight up in bed in a cold sweat. Minutes later, he’s scratching away feverishly at a blackboard, having drawn one large circle marked “black metal” and another marked “funeral doom,” the two intertwined in a Venn Diagram, with various attributes of both scribbled in. Could it work? He rubs his brow, concentrating intensely.

Black metal and funeral doom have a lot in common – correct? They have similar artistic aims, and they’re both concerned with ambiance and atmosphere, so it seems plausible that the two might be combined to some good end. But they share something else as well: the innovating artists of both styles broke from the crowd, but influenced a lot of mediocre followers that merely shuffle along with the herd around them. Nortt just follows two herds instead of one.