Origin: Uppsala, Sweden 🇸🇪
Genre: Melodic Black Metal
Now, this is melodic black metal done the Swedish way. With so many underground black metal outfits fixated upon the early 90’s – releasing albums that harken back to the Golden Age every five minutes – it’s invigorating to hear Nazghor who – instead of taking the nostalgic approach – simply create music that pays homage to the pride and defining style of their national scene.
The Sverige path to creating black metal always leads to the highest plateaus of the genre; a place where the legendary Dissection are immortalized and those who followed in their path: Watain, Ofermod and even new wave occultists Mortuus oversee the Swedish movement. When it comes to Nazghor, much like the aforementioned Dissection or fellow legends Sacramentum, it’s all about melody. And it’s been a while since I’ve listened to a true-to-form melodic black metal record that so captures the essence of Swedish BM without sounding like a carbon copy or a throwback. Nazghor’s latest album, “Seventh Secular Crusade” was independently released on November 25.
With “Seventh Secular Crusade”, Nazghor eclipse the moons of the black metal world; drawing awe and fascination from the hordes below. Gorgeous melodic sequences to be experienced in every track from open to close along with rarely-heard levels of heart & soul oozing from each solo and every chorus. “True black metal” is generally without such alluring compositions, it’s dry and not meant to hit the same sweet spot. But Nazghor are taking little concern with that as they tantalize the spirit with illuminating cuts like “A Crown Soaked In Blood” and “Beyond the Grave” that not only see the band reveling in the glorious melodicism of their own sound, but also dabbling in other influences such as black & roll and anthemic heavy metal. All phases resonating with clarity and soul as Nazghor rain down upon you – as if from skies pregnant with the most purifying life’s blood – saturating melodies and rejuvenating leads.
“Primordial Lineage” stands imposingly as the album’s most intense cut. An almost blackened death level of epicality and brutality to be found here: towering guitar arrangements, eviscerating rhythms and an overall air of malevolence carrying over to the sheer beauty of the track’s closing couple of minutes. Hearty Heathen bellows and rustic undertones redolent to Norwegians Kampfar and Taake transition into Inner-flame-stoking tremolos and heartwarming melodic passages that bring to mind fellow Swedish MBM artisans Wormwood. Thus far, a comprehensive and wholesome black metal experience. In the shallows of some enchanted river is where you’ll spend your final minutes of what has been a journey through some of black metal’s most mystifying and even welcoming environments. It’s as if you’re literally being baptized in black metal here as you find yourself at the will of the music – in absorption of every deeply penetrating, almost tear-inducing part – leaving you in a state of pure infernal ecstasy and a place of deeper understanding.
There are countless “great” black metal albums out there, but few that move you like this one. You don’t have to be in the mood for it per se. This is a recording for every soul under the black mark to enjoy. Transcendent yet rooted in the fundamentals and utterly indulgent in every way, “Seventh Secular Crusade” is an absolute gem. Worthy of more listens and certainly that part of your soul that you left behind back there in the river. What a fine way to close out what has been a solid year for black metal.
Experience “Seventh Secular Crusade” by Nazghor right here as presented by Black Metal Promotion:
REVIEW BY JEGER