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Review: Nile - At the Gate of Sethu
At the Gate of Sethu

Label: Nuclear Blast Records
Year released: 2012
Duration: 47:45
Tracks: 11
Genre: Death Metal


Review online: October 18, 2012
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
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Rated 3.7/5 (74%) (50 Votes)

Nile have been putting out killer albums for so long, that it's almost tempting to just rubberstamp a new one and say "good" without a serious listen. Last time out, however, Nile brought forth the highly disappointing Those Whom the Gods Detest, which had a few killer tracks, but was largely just dull. This time, they have added derivative songwriting, bad vocals, and poor production values into what is easily the weakest album of their career.

Problem one is Dallas, who handles most of the vocals on this album, and they sound like crap. He's a decent backup vocalist, but his dominant style here is a higher-pitched and cleaner style than the guttural sound we expect, and it sounds less like a death growl than like some kid yelling at his mom. Plus there is some out and out singing on here, which I'm not opposed to on principle, but it's badly done and irritating. Problem two is the songwriting, which is imitative of past albums to the point of theft, and you would swear you have heard all of this before, only these versions sound worse than any previous Nile album.

Problem three is the production, and between the over-processed rhythm guitars that sound like mush and the terrible mix that makes hash out of the songs, turns heaviness to mud, and puts Dallas' vocals way out on top where they do not belong, the whole thing is just kind of painful to listen to. If you didn't know this was Nile you might be inclined to be more forgiving, but the band that produced the utter masterwork In Their Darkened Shrines cannot get away with this kind of crap. Highly disappointing.

More about Nile...
Review: Amongst The Catacombs Of Nephren-Ka (reviewed by Lars Christiansen)
Review: Amongst The Catacombs Of Nephren-Ka (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: Annihilation of the Wicked (reviewed by 4th Horseman)
Review: Annihilation of the Wicked (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: Black Seeds Of Vengeance (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
Review: In Their Darkened Shrines (reviewed by Scott Murray)
Review: Ithyphallic (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: Those Whom the Gods Detest (reviewed by Hermer Arroyo)
Review: Vile Nilotic Rites (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: What Should Not Be Unearthed (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: Worship the Animal - 1994: The Lost Recordings (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
Interview with Dallas Toler-Wade (Guitars, vocals) on October 17, 2009 (Interviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Interview with guitarist and vocalist Dallas Toler-Wade on April 27, 2016 (Interviewed by Luxi Lahtinen)
Interview with guitarist and vocalist Karl Sanders on May 4, 2023 (Interviewed by Luxi Lahtinen)
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