Nocturnal - Storming Evil

Nocturnal Storming Evil cover
Nocturnal
Storming Evil
High Roller Records
2014
6.5
Nocturnal, are a band that has been going on since the late 90s and this is their third proper release, although they seem to have released more EPs and splits than I’d care to mention, since then. They seem to play this sort of old school riffy speed thrash that’s rather blackened and really aggressive, but because their vocalist Tyrannizer, (sic) seems to be a girl, the vocals tend in all their aggressiveness to be a little higher in pitch and there are even some bizarre laryngeal screams and howls that might be a bit of an acquired taste but sort of seem to add, rather than subtract to the bands “effect”.
 
Overall, the style, might not be as technical as say, the Arch Enemies of this world, even though it’s not really a hundred thousand miles behind, in any aspect, aural or visual and the overall coolness and originality and metallum factor, is definitely, way higher as the band is a lot more anachronistic, recalling all the older bands like Sodom, early Kreator, Destruction, Exhumer, etc. and well I suppose one can easily then can hear early Slayer in there too. Even the cover of the album employs the designer of some of those old school “Noise” Thrash Bands covers Philip Lawvere who’s designed some pretty iconic thrash metal artwork, back in the day. Seemingly the band’s appeal is also far reaching as on Darkthrone’s album “Dark Thrones and Black Flags”, the Nocturnal logo appears on the leather jacket of the drawn figure. So, Fenriz and Ted must be big fans of Nocturnal...
 
At any rate, the album is relentless in its attack with its only slight issue, being the almost constant, fast pace and in your face appeal, being much of its Achilles heel as much as it may at first appear to be its charm. Things tend to be a little too uniform, with a few exceptions. “Storm from the graves” is a good opener, with those weird wails and some smart drum, speed ups, going on for it.
 
Rising Demons” just blasts out of the speakers at blistering speed and hardly slows down, still being quite charming with its punchy main riff.
 
“Tyrants of Damnation” is slower for a while, before following suit, after a while, into a spiraling thrashmaggedon! It’s also a tad more mundane and dark.
 
“Preaching Death”, just puts the pedal to the metal once again, charmingly too... but so does “Perish in Darkness” that’s hardly distinguishable… I mean the riff is a little bit different, but…
 
“Crushing the Bones” starts off with some slow beating drums and is more black/thrash but tempo wise, as soon as it speeds up, it’s more of the same, more or less.
 
“Taken By Fire” however is, really a brave undertaking as it’s a lot slower, a lot heavier and the vocals are a LOT, more brutal and mean! Makes quite a difference in the albums flow.
 
“Ripping Knives” begins with the sound of a knife being unsheathed and some exciting guitar riffs, before it goes into a darker meaner direction, with the said riffs, still repeating however throughout. It’s quite interesting.
 
“Blessed Death” is another typical deathrashathon, in the “expected” tempos before the band gives the parting blow with “Ruthless Darkness” another blackened speed epic, which seems ideal to close the album as it closes the album just as unrelentingly as it started.
 
Nocturnal are fairly good and dedicated to their craft. They do what they do, well, only maybe they are a little unimaginative in the execution department. But they are quite efficient and proficient and I’d much rather listen to them, than a lot of the “fake” Swedish mellow/death bands that sound a thousand times “wussier”. Oldschoolers & puritan thrashers might even like this a little more than I did.