Nachtblut: Dogma

Dogma the new album from German band Nachtblut certainly grabs the attention from its first surge of energy to the last. It is a storm of inspired black metal and symphonic industrial with strong strains of classic metal for extra flavouring to lead the ear and senses on a lively and corruptive journey. Like a festering brew of Rammstein and Deadstars with the insatiable blackness of a Cradle Of Filth or Dimmu Borgir, the album is a readily pleasing and intriguing release.  Though it does not really leave one breathless with excitement or amazement it without reservation treats one to an imaginative and compelling companionship.

Originally a solo project by vocalist Askeroth, Nachtblut meaning night of blood in English, evolved into a full line-up as the singer found like minded musicians to share his visions and imagination. Through their  love shows and the  self released  The First Supper of 2007 the band drew much attention their way. Shared stages with the likes of Immortal, Sodom, Watain, Varg, and Endstille followed as their provocative nature and sounds brought them acclaim and arguably equal despise but always attention. 2009 saw the band release their concept album Antique followed by its re-release two years later when the band signed with Napalm Records who also release Dogma. Long awaited the new album from Askeroth, guitarist Cross, bassist Sacerdos, drummer Skoll, and Lymania on keyboards, finds a defined maturity to their sound and an inspiring imagination, as well as an irresistible union between two distinct genres.

The album, opens with the title track and probably the song closest to being truly black metal on the album. The atmosphere brought from the simply keys and exploratory guitars sets the tone for the track with the blackened vocals of Askeroth as vehement as the songs is mesmeric in its emotive breath. The track is striking without leaving a lasting impression though the following Der Weg Ist Das Ziel certainly achieves that with its military like initial beats and driving riffs. Striding with a heavy metal intent and heavy symphonic air the song is a commanding and satisfying beast with extra impressive asides in the shape of the pipe like keys and melodic hooks.

The likes of the striking Rache and impressive Macht leave one further satisfied but it is with a trio of songs that the greatest highlights of the album are found. The excellent gothic gaited Ich Trinke Blut with its glorious full melodic heart aligned to a venomous intensity, the hypnotic  Eiskönigin, and the predatory industrial toned stomp of Mordlust, all easily standout. Each is a rampage of strong invention, imagination, and wanton desire to envelope the senses with an intrusive yet infectious majesty. Arguably the album as a whole does not quite live up to these songs but there is never a moment where ingenuity and compulsive listening is left wanting.

Closing on Vulva and Schritte further songs that are impossible to leave until their final notes depart, the album is an impressive fusion of styles brought in a fluid elegance and formidable might. Possibly Dogma as a whole lacks enough moments for more of its tracks to remain in thought and memory after their leaving of the ear but whilst together there is nothing less than a pleasurable and rewarding exchange of emotions and enjoyment.

Ringmaster 25/06/2012

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