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Death Nazar is a duo from Irkutsk, Russia who mix alternative and death metal along with clarinet oriented klezmer music thus creating a very avant-garde metal sound.
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DEATH NAZAR Death Nazar album cover 2.50 | 1 ratings
Death Nazar
Avant-garde Metal 2015
DEATH NAZAR Slendy Dog: 36 Minutes Forward to Mental album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Slendy Dog: 36 Minutes Forward to Mental
Avant-garde Metal 2017

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DEATH NAZAR Re-Published Orgasm album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Re-Published Orgasm
Avant-garde Metal 2017

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Album · 2015 · Avant-garde Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
siLLy puPPy
The former Soviet Union nations that once existed in isolation away from Western influences has become a hotbed of activity in the 21st century with metal music being one of the greatest exports from both Russia and the Urkaine. Add to the list in addition to an ever growing roster of exemplary black and death metal bands is a legion of experimental bands that has found hitherto unthinkable ways of mixing and melding metal to different musical styles unknown to Western ears.

One of these unorthodox bands is DEATH NAZAR all the way from Irkutsk, Russia which sits next to the majestic Lake Baikal which incidentally happens to be the home of the world’s only fresh water seal! Named after the eye-shaped amulet that is believed to project against the evil eye, this act is simply a duo that consists of vocalist Igor Shestakov and Evgeny Boyko who pretty much covers everything else!

That “everything else” includes not only the guitar and drum programming but also the clarinet, yes, i did just write the clarinet! DEATH NAZAR is utterly unique in the metal world as far as i know in that they combine both alternative and death metal with traditional Jewish music known as klezmer. Sound weird enough for you? Well, it’s not as strange as it sounds actually. On this eponymously titled album we get seven tracks, most of which combine a rather alternative metal approach with a few death metal outbursts accompanied by a klezmer styled clarinet performance.

Given the klezmer influences this music is highly melodic and ethnically upbeat but doesn’t gel as well as bands like Secret Chiefs 3 and Estradasphere have successfully tackled when they have incorporated world ethnic influences into a heavier rock and metal paradigm. What’s good about this album is that all the tracks are highly melodic and easily accessible even upon first listen despite the overall tag of avant-garde metal.

What’s sort of irritating is that Shestakov sounds like Mike Patton on Faith No More’s earlier albums for the majority of the album complete with the same nasal vocal style and phrasings. There are the occasional death growls that emerge out of nowhere and the guitars range from alternative metal riffing to heavy death and thrash bombast. No matter which aspect of metal is churning out, the clarinet continues to add the ethnic touches without deviating from its traditional roles. Some sizzling guitar solos do occur.

The standout track is the misplaced “Messenger of Fate” which sounds nothing like the others. This one features an acoustic strummed guitar style with the guest female vocals of Ekaterina Kuznetsova who sings passionately but the track sounds more like an Alanis Morrisette ballad at the synagogue more than anything else on this album. This DEATH NAZAR release is short one at just over 32 minutes but after it’s all done i think i’ve had enough.

This is an interesting mix for sure and the stylistic approach isn’t the problem at all but rather the deliveries. Shestakov’s vocals fall flat a lot of the time and start to sound a little too one trick pony after all is said and done. The band has hit upon an excellent mash up of genres but clearly hasn’t mastered them. This sounds more like an amateurish demo despite the decent production value. The duo clearly hasn’t quite found a way to creatively mix and meld the disparate styles. A decent start but one that is flawed in too many ways to really recommend this except as a novel curiosity of an experimental band from a remote region of the globe.

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