Storming Evil

Written by: EW on 23/02/2014 22:14:30

Nocturnal come with quite the pedigree, yet until the time has come to listen to their third album "Storming Evil" they had yet to ever warrant a spin in my busy playlists. Primarily I've known of their name from the cover to Darkthrone's 2008 "Dark Thrones and Black Flags" album, and also as the destination of frontlady Tyrannizer who moved back to her native Germany after fronting a London-based band in the early 2000s that were busy on my local scene back then. Now with some listens to "Storming Evil" I am beginning to gather a strong idea of why their name carries significant underground recognition as this album ranks as one of the best black/thrashing albums I've heard in some time, in a field of many. It should come as no particular surprise that the genre, which carries the flag of true diehard metal like no other - think unadulterated riff fests, typical hellish metal subjects, bullets, patch jackets - comes from Germany, a point reflected in Nocturnal's obvious influences (Kreator, Destruction, Exumer, Assassin, Desaster etc). I might even go so far to declare that this collection of bands betrays upon Nocturnal it's own archetype Teutonic 'sound' to rival past scenes of British, Swedish and Norwegian heritage.

With track titles like "Preaching Death", "Perish In Darkness" and "Ripping Knives" that could be taken straight from "Pleasure to Kill" you should not be coming to "Storming Evil" for a lesson in thoughtful insight, but to ignore the sentiment behind their themes would be to not get what Nocturnal are about. From the outset of "Storm from the Graves" this LP thrashes along a tidal wave of leads for 45 lung-busting minutes, only slowing for impromptu moments of fist-pumping stomp, quickly to regain the enthusiasm for their accurate recital of the technical riffing template laid down most notably by Destruction in their mid-80s pomp. "Taken By Fire" is my favoured example, the break early on in which leads into mass headbanging mania is brilliant, of the kind that were it not borne from such a collective diehard would lose half it's appeal. "Rising Demons" and "Ruthless Darkness" bleed excellent fretwork. in turn showing quite why Destruction's 80s material is rated so highly - this is much more than run-of-the-mill 4-bar thrash around a palm-muted rhythm riff and helps stand Nocturnal on a strong footing. Note too Tyrannizer's frequent flirtations with Schmier-esque vocal squeals alongside her standard gruff delivery, providing a pleasant dichotomy the purposes of added metal points.

"Storming Evil" is not the kind of album where it is worth dissecting each individual track due to the similarities in style across all ten. Despite this it is though exceedingly listenable; eschewing any sort of reliance on blastbeats it is left to the natural flowing rhythm of Avenger's guitar and Vomitor's bass with a solid backing from the appropriately named Skullsplitter to utilise the clear powerful sound. Falling somewhere between the tremolo laced works of Desaster with the intricate leads of Destruction and punching power of Kreator, "Storming Evil" does a great job of harnessing the spirit of the genre in laying before us a most worthy addition to that canon, as well noting the excellent catalogue being built up on High Roller Records.


Download: Ruthless Darkness, Taken by Fire
For The Fans Of: Desaster, Destruction, Kreator, Exumer
Listen: Facebook

Release date 28.02.2014
High Roller Records

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