Having a demo (last year) and an album (this year), Nidhöggr can be categorized as a new force in the realm of black metal. However, the members are not greenhorns in this darkest territory of music; veteran mongers like Nox (Craft, Omnizide) handles the vocal duties and Hveðrungr (Under Attack, Ex – Pagan Rites, Styggelse) takes care of the guitar responsibilities, thus one can most likely expect a cold blooded black metal album from this troop. “Ragnarök”, the debut full length was digitally released by Lake of Fire Productions in March, 2016, and the following month saw the release of it in CD version from Craneo Negro Records.
The album title “Ragnarök” easily suggests that the album is about Norse Mythology, but if anyone is inaccurately expecting the typical Viking or a bit macerated sounding black metal tracks because of the Norse Mythological themed lyrics, then it can be assured that the lyrics deal with the darkest aspects of Norse Mythology with the amalgamation of war oriented themes, and in terms of sonority, one can look ahead to hear the cold blooded harshness of the acts like Carpathian Forest, Craft, Armagedda, Darkthrone and the likes.
Regardless of not having the actual lyrics of the tracks, direct explanation from the guitarist himself made me unclouded about the subject of each of the tracks. The band has phenomenally made each of the tracks in a way so that they perfectly reflect the ambiance of the lyrical theme. From the beginning track to the ending track, that remarkable feature can be observed. The relentless, rage igniting riffs of the track “The Raid of Lindisfarne” provides the aura of extermination, and the track took us back to the incident of Viking’s raid on Lindisfarne. The bloodcurdling grim voice of Nox together with the gloomy guitar bridges forewarn about the presence of the fimbulvinter in the track “Cold”. The guitarist showcased his craft by offering variation in the tempos of the riffing deliveries; obviously the variation played an important role to make the tracks strong. Drumming was rightly accelerated or lowered down according to the tempos of the riff. The solid production which is out of over usages of artificial skills has made the overall album into a perfect black metal listening experience.
The band is offering nothing revolutionary; their works are retrospective but nevertheless enough thought provoking for any fans of second wave of black metal.
———–By: Zoheb Mahmud———-
STREAM & PURCHASE Link:
Label: Lake of Fire Productions (Digital, March 25, 2016)
Craneo Negro Records (CD, April 15, 2016)
Hveðrungr – Guitars
Nox – Vocals
Vánagandr – Drums
Hrungnir – Bass