NILE — Black Seeds of Vengeance (review)

NILE — Black Seeds of Vengeance album cover Album · 2000 · Brutal Death Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
4/5 ·
UMUR
"Black Seeds of Vengeance" is the 2nd full-length studio album by US death metal act Nile. The album was released through Relapse Records in September 2000. There have been a couple of lineup changes since the release of "Amongst the Catacombs of Nephren-Ka (1998)" as drummer Pete Hammoura was forced to leave Nile as a result of an injury he sustained while touring in support of the debut album. He plays on "To Dream of Ur", but other than that the drums are played by session drummer Derek Roddy (Malevolent Creation, Hate Eternal, Council of the Fallen, Serpents Rise...). Second guitarist/vocalist Dallas Toler-Wade is new in the lineup. The lineup is completed by Karl Sanders (guitars, vocals, keyboards) and Chief Spires (bass, vocals) who are the only remaining members from the lineup who recorded "Amongst the Catacombs of Nephren-Ka (1998)". Only a few months after the release of "Black Seeds of Vengeance", Chief Spires would also jump ship.

So "Black Seeds of Vengeance" was created in a period of lineup turmoil, but that´s not really audible when listening to the album, which is cleverly crafted and skillfully played. The album features 12 tracks and a full playing time of 42:55. Some tracks are fast-paced, technical, and initially quite chaotic sounding like "Defiling the Gates of Ishtar" and the title track, while others are more heavy and epic like "The Black Flame" and "To Dream of Ur". In addition to the "regular" metal tracks, the album also features shorter instrumental middle eastern sounding interludes. The ancient egypt lyrical themes are explained in detail in the booklet which features extensive liner notes for each track. Along with the generally dark atmosphere, the middle eastern instrumental parts, the in depth description of the lyrics provide the overall listening experience with great impact.

The band are highly skilled musicians, and every note is played with great passion and conviction. High speed precision drumming, fast-paced guitar riffs and screaming atonal solos, and brutal growling vocals delivered by three different vocalists. The vocals are predominantly very low range and unintelligible, but there is the occasional word or phrase which are intelligible. The sound production is generally powerful, raw, and detailed, but a more organic bass drum sound and a more intense guitar tone, could have made it even better. Those are only minor issues though, and "Black Seeds of Vengeance" is overall a great sounding release.

So upon conclusion "Black Seeds of Vengeance" is a high quality sophomore studio album by Nile, which sees them developing their sound even further towards something unique. It´s raw, filthy, and chaotic sounding, but at the same time highly sophisticated and structurally complex, which is a hard balance that Nile strike perfectly. A 4 star (80%) rating is deserved.
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Vim Fuego wrote:
4 months ago
Agreed. There's not really a bad album among them.
siLLy puPPy wrote:
4 months ago
I love this one more than others but actually there is no Nile album i haven't grown to love. They are all pretty special although some take more effort to penetrate. Great review!

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