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Review: Nightbringer - Apocalypse Sun
Apocalypse Sun

Label: Avantgarde Music
Year released: 2010
Duration: 66:07
Tracks: 10
Genre: Black Metal


Review online: May 6, 2010
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
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Rated 4.33/5 (86.51%) (43 Votes)

I was mesmerized by this band's debut album Death And The Black Work a couple of years ago, and so I awaited this one with eager anticipation. Nightbringer came out of seeming nowhere (Colorado actually, so close) and embodied a kind of grim occult Black Metal I have not seen outside of a very few bands, and almost never in a US band. So here we have their follow-up, the dense and mystic Apocalypse Sun. I want this to be as good as their debut, but it really is not quite of the same quality, though it is a fine disc nevertheless.

Once more we have a long album filled with long songs infused with an epic sense and feeling, each song seeming to tell a story while remaining part of a whole. This is slower and not quite as abrasive as Death And The Black Work, with a guitar sound that is not a freezing cold or raw. I can see why, as this album is festooned with extremely high-fret tremolo picking used to accent the music. It is a dominant feature of the album, and if the guitars were too distorted it would sound awful. That said, the ubiquity of the technique gets a bit tiresome after an hour, and I wish they had not overused it so much. Some of these songs are really good, and they all have powerful, compelling parts, but all the songs are very similar, and so they kind of run together. They throttled back on the aggression for mood, but I think they traded away more than they got. This album shows Nightbringer trying to simultaneously expand their sound while still doing all the things people liked about their last album, and it only succeeds in places. A bit of a sophomore slump for this band, but not a big one. This is still one of the must-have Black Metal albums for the year.

More about Nightbringer...
Review: Death And The Black Work (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: Ego Dominus Tuus (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: Hierophany of the Open Grave (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
Review: Terra Damnata (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Interview with Naas Alcameth (Vocals and Guitars) on May 19, 2010 (Interviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
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