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Review: Nerthus - Black Medieval Art
Nerthus
www.ccprecords.com/ner.htm
Black Medieval Art

Label: CCP Records
Year released: 2004
Duration: 44:01
Tracks: 14
Genre: Black/Folk Metal

Rating: 4.6/5

Review online: March 19, 2005
Reviewed by: Ktb
Readers Rating
for:
Black Medieval Art

Rated 3/5 (60%) (3 Votes)
Review


Nerthus' "Black Medieval Art" has to be the most medieval album I've ever heard in my entire life. The word medieval probably makes you think of epic, and it is epic in a way. But it's not the epic type of stuff we're used to hearing. This latest Nerthus album offers some of the most unique melodies ever, and the most medieval riffs ever. During some songs, I can actually picture medieval markets, battles, etc. Their first 2 albums had potential, but sometimes the melodies were a bit too cheesy. However, in "Black Medieval Art", Nerthus have reached their full potential musically and vocally.

Let's just take the intro, "Behind the Horizon" as an example. Yes, it's a very simple and short song played by a flute and a clarinet (Not sure if it's a clarinet, but it's probably played by keyboard anyways). But have I heard anything sounding close to that in my whole life, or at least in a metal album? No. And that's what makes their music so unique. This album may displease those who are expecting an extremely raw and up-beat album to headbang to. In fact, I'm wondering why people call this band Black metal, it's mainly folk metal with some heavier riffage at time (even though the earlier stuff was somewhat rawer). Also, some people may find annoying the fact that there is an interlude at about every song or so, but I find those interludes very creative and medieval, and they usually set the tone for the next song. For the heavier parts of this album, they sound a bit like Ensiferum, but in the same way these two bands are totally different. Nerthus is way more medieval, while Ensiferum is more folk-ish. The only problem with the interludes is that all the instruments are played by keyboard (except for guitar, bass, and drums of course), and Nerthus could've pushed themselves a bit, like hiring some professional musicians and such, or trying to create an even more medieval atmosphere.

Even if "Black Medieval Art" has a few flaws and such, the melodies that are contained in each song (especially in interludes like "Behind the Horizon" or "Prehistoric Crafts") will stay in my mind forever. Medieval metal classic!


Track Listing:
  1. Behind The Horizon
  2. Battle Song
  3. Prehistoric Crafts
  4. Dark Triumphant Hordes
  5. Melodies Of Pride And Honour
  6. Masters Of Steel And Masters Of Fight
  7. Roving Clouds
  8. The Era Of Pureness
  9. Seeds Of Death
  10. Devising Of Black Strategies
  11. Hymn To The Glory Of Mother Nature
  12. The Black Fortress
  13. Before The Last Battle
  14. Where The Eagles Fly
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