Welcome to the musical meandering insights of Aaron Joy. Here you'll find 600 reviews of CDs & DVDs of rock & metal in all its variations, mainstream & indie. What they all share is that the album or band is unique in some way & not every submission was reviewed. Please share these reviews or link to them if you like what you read. Reviews are no longer being posted here but feel free to e-mail Aaron & post comments. (Formerly the Roman Midnight Music Blog) (last update 5/23/2017)

February 5, 2010

Nile ~ Those Whom The Gods Detest

(Click on heading to visit official website.)
Style: black metal
Label: Nuclear Blast
Year: 2009
Home: South Carolina

Members: Karl Sanders ~ lead vocals/guitar
Dallas Toler-Wade ~ guitar/bass/b. vocals
George Kollias ~ drums/percussion

I try to review things here that show some sign of individuality &, if it's possible nowadays, some level of originality. Albeit, some albums may be more or less original than others, I do aim for originality in my selection. I recently read an interview with Nile in a metal magazine & was immediately interested. A band that writes exclusively about Ancient Egypt? That's original! Of course, I had to hear them. The song titles are proof that my instincts were correct: 'Hittite Dung Incantation', '4th Arra Of Dagon', 'Permitting The Noble Dead To Descend To The Underworld', 'Yezd Desert Ghul Ritual In The Abandoned Towers of Silence', 'Kem Khefa Khesef', 'The Eye Of Ra'. Wow! & the opening song 'Kafir' even features some Arabic chanting in the background. & with that my interest & awe suddenly ... decayed. The music does not live up to my expectations. Or, maybe my expectations were misplaced. I was hoping for an Egyptian-themed Orphaned Land but end up with Morbid Angel black metal with same over-used double bass at full speed, "there is no God" growling vocals & barely melodic chugging guitars. They say when the image is great there's no energy left for the music. That's true. The same fault is with Dethklok of which the cartoon is amazing but the band okay & Austrian Death Machine of which the idea & visuals are better. Though, the Arabic backing chant does reappear in other songs it's just an overdub that doesn't seem particularly tied to the music around it. Maybe I'm just not hearing Nile with the right perspective. I'd love to be proven wrong, but it just sounds like the same death metal to me I've heard countless times, which is for me, more often not creative than it is. Maybe I just haven't learned to listen properly to death metal yet. Though, I do like Arch Enemy & Satyricon, so I'm not totally lost at this end of the metal spectrum.

(featured on the Roman Midnight Music CD Reviews & Interviews podcast: episode 4 "Black Metal", October 2010, click here to listen)

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