Florida’s occult sci-fi Death Metal outfit Nocturnus AD have risen from the ashes of Nocturnus. Nocturnus AD’s album ‘Paradox’ is a heavy, bombastic, and brimming with cold, dark atmosphere, groove, subtlety and razor-sharp instrumental work.
Seizing the Throne begins with a synth intro with chimes almost invoking mysticism, then quickly leads into blistering technical guitar soloing underpinned by thick, stylish rhythm guitar and pounding double bass before the meaty hooks of the riff and harsh vocals take over. With a dynamic vocal performance, there is a shift from harsher vocals to a subtler, slightly cleaner style slightly reminiscent of Slayer. With the slower, heavy rhythm of the bass and synth underpinning the guitar work, the deep, dark tone of the album is set.
The Bandar Sign begins with a creepy synth intro, perfectly invoking the sci-fi style, then immediately switches to thick, heavy guitar riffage with the lyrics sung in a more understated style and perfectly punctuated to the music underpinning it, offering a great deal of personality in terms of sound, with plenty of charm and hard edge. Mid-song the synths offer an uneasy sounding sci-fi riff bridging verse, solos and verse. There is plenty of style and groove in the guitar riffs, and the use of rhythm that elevates in a subtle way the groove of the song.
Paleolithic‘s thick, meaty riffs kick off the song, with the thick hooks and riffs underpinned by uneasy keyboards, with brutal spat vocals and blistering solos throughout. The culmination of these elements offer a satisfying bridge into the following track.
Precession of the Equinoxes begins with a cacophony of uneasy guitars and synths that permeate the song. Heavy stylish riffs are uplifted by the dark sci-fi synths and brutal harsh vocals, which bridges into some crazy face-melting riff work that leads into some truly blisteringly fast solos before slowing to meaty chords.
The Antechamber begins with fast and complex riffs at blistering speed, with Browning spitting the lyrics. The riff work in this song is underpinned with a greater sense of stylistic groove and subtlety that excellently underpins the vocals and bridges beautifully into more blistering, fast solos. Browning’s vocals on this track are complemented by the more traditional deep, Death Metal backing vocals, which are uplifted significantly by the thick and heavy hooks and riffs. The synth outro provides a genuinely strange, even uncomfortable feel.
Apotheosis begins with thick chords and synths that invoke an almost mystical sci-fi sensibility with their sound that immediately bridges into some excellent guitar soloing before chords and synths transition to some solid and stylish riffs. Apotheosis also offers elements of a classical Gothic sound that creep in and heighten the bleak and cold atmospheric sensibility of the music, shifting between blistering solos, verses that invoke a subtle Gothic style and a fast-paced bridge with atmospheric keyboards underpinning the track that allows for the atmospheric style of the synths to well and truly shine.
Aeon of the Ancient Ones begins with a downright creepy, unsettling and almost ear-splitting synth intro that leads into sharp, stylish riffs that bridge into the hard-edged vocals. The synths offer a subtle foundation for the chunky riff work. The synth breakdown is truly creepy and a highlight among blistering solos. The Gothic style again creeps in through the synths, invoking an incredibly dark sense of atmosphere and beautifully underpinning the whispered lyrics and slower guitar riffs that transition to guitar solos before the verse begins and the song concludes.
Number 9 brilliantly combines atmospheric keyboards with stylish guitar riffage and pounding drums, the culmination of which is incredibly catchy, oozing with style and some truly awesome guitar work that excellently showcases of immense technical mastery. The groove and subtlety as well as the sheer brilliance in the use of fast stylish riffs are brilliantly backed up by perfect synth use, the solo of which truly adds more shine to this album, which in turn offers a fitting and truly awesome ending.
Offering harsh vocals that are excellently complemented by the music that surrounds them, the vocal performance is both hard-edged and brimming with personality. Shifting from a more traditional Death Metal style to somewhat cleaner vocals works very well with the quality of the music backing it up. Instrumentally, meaty chords, flying fast technical solos, soaring riffs, dark atmospheric keyboards and Browning’s awesome performance on drums, from the more atmospheric and heavier tracks to the blistering speed of The Antechamber, Nocturnus AD’s ‘Paradox’ is fast, brutal and face-melting. This is only further complemented by the combination of incredible technical skill and prowess combined with stylish overtones and the cold, bleak, atmospheric sound that heavily invokes sound associated and suited to the sci-fi themed lyrical storytelling.
GET YOUR HANDS ON NOCTURNUS AD’S ‘PARADOX’ FROM BANDCAMP HERE!