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Review: Ninnghizhidda - Demigod

Label: Displeased Records
Year released: 2002
Duration: 42:08
Tracks: 11
Genre: Death Metal


Review online: May 22, 2003
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Readers' Rating
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Rated 2.75/5 (55%) (8 Votes)

Score one for the metal detector! I kept seeing this one, and it kept nagging at me. "Buy me, I’m cool." So I went for it. Good call for the Sargonmeister. This is the second disc from Ninnghizidda (Say THAT three times real fast) and I’m going to have to get the first one, because this rules.

I have seen this album described as melodic black metal, which is nuts. This does have some similarities to keyboardy bands like Dimmu Borgir or even Bal-Sagoth, true. But there is a lot more than that going on here. The basic sound of Ninnghizidda is death metal, but with the heavy use of keys and the general high level of musicianship they have created a very original sound. Layering cool death-metal riffs over creepy symphonic keys that sound like either horror-movie soundtracks or organ music from a black mass, Ninnghizidda come up with some very cool stuff. The vocals are rough and rather guttural, rather than raspy, and you can actually make out the words, which I always favor. There are also some female vocals on here, but not of the operatic variety, but rather a nice midrange that usually doubles the death vocals, creating a nifty effect.

Musically this is extremely varied, with lots of time changes, segues from heavy riffing to moodier passages, and some very nice solos mixed in. These guys obviously know what they are doing, and the musicianship, as I mentioned before, is quite impressive. Be sure to check out the instrumental "Siesta in a-minor" which is exactly what it says – an acoustic guitar piece, very very well played. You would think it would seem out of place here, but it actually fits right in. Other fine moments include "Rape (The Virgin Mary)", "The Awakening" and the awesome title track. But really this is all good, and there are no filler or wasted cuts here. Also the quality does not peter out in the second half of the album, which is a welcome change.

Digipack again. (Arrgh!) But the art and layout are very cool, and the lyrics aren’t half-bad either. Blatantly satanic, yes, but in an enjoyably old-school way that recalls Morbid Angel’s glory days. I really love the menacing, evil glare of the cover art.

With more and more bands mixing death, black and thrash metal these days in an effort to make something new, Ninnghizidda have actually succeeded in finding their own sound. By combining a Floridian death-metal assault with the atmosphere of melodic black metal and a bit of the experimentalism of bands like Opeth or Eternal Tears of Sorrow, these guys have put out an album with a kind of crossover appeal. This is just a cool CD, and fans of all kinds of extreme metal will find something to get into here. Ninnghizidda are definitely a band to watch.

More about Ninnghizhidda...
Review: Blasphemy (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
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