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Nazgul –De Expugnatione Elfmuth lp


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First vinyl edition. Black vinyl with gatefold cover. Limited 500 copies

This obscure Italian act (from Palermo) goes on a mission that always goes beyond their power. With only two members, the band goes to the extreme when it comes to Tolkien-influenced music. Orchestral in its arrangement and written in Latin, “De Expugnatione Elfmuth” tries to be the ultimate opus, the end all of fantasy-driven black metal, but the album, in staking an original claim, struggles to find a balance between fairy-tale-like enchantment and warlike aggression. As much as the album pushes the boundary, “De Expugnatione Elfmuth” perhaps pushes it too far and comes out sounding like the soundtrack to a black metal Renaissance fair. Does it sound strange? Well it is. I’m quite convinced that if the material on this album was played entirely by an orchestra, it could easily be passed off as first rate classical music. But one of the great things about “De Expugnatione Elfmuth”, is that for every time you will listen to it, you will find something new as there are so many layers of melodies that together craft such elegant and beautiful music, whilst still maintaining the required heaviness of black metal. To be completely honest, I rejected this piece of art at first. It requires huge amount of concentration and even tolerance. One thing you have to learn to accept is the vocals, or more specifically, the shrieks. They sound a bit too high pitched, and sound more like a pig being tortured than fear inducing ringwraiths. But i guess Nazgul without Zakrathor’s singing would not be Nazgul. But maybe without Zakrathros voice it wouldnt have been possible to create this atmosphere full of hopelessness, chaos and despair. So before you accept this its extremely difficult to stay concentrated but when you get pass this you will notice the whole concept. As for music, it is perfectly balanced mixture of beautiful, catchy, folk/classic, baroque melodies and cruel, open aggressiveness and hostility that adorns this particular genre. In certain moments, somewhat unexpected, but well-timed choir chanting will appear and thus, though in complete contrast with unarticulated leading vocal, further invoke the dark, demonic emotions that pervade and colours this, i must say, masterpiece of metal art. Overall conclusion, almost perfect fantasy themed debut album. Technical, imaginative, original. Very worth of your time and money. If you listen it repeatedly, you will discover that every listening reveals a new, hidden secret that you was not aware of earlier. It does sound poetic, but it is true. One listening is simply not enough to discover everything this album has to offer.

Track list:
1. Proemium
2. Hult-Garth (Qui Inferorum Animas Excitat)
3. Elficidium
4. Dies Festi
5. In Summis Montibus
6. Nigrum Praesagium
7. Impetus Quartae Lunae Novae
8. Caelum Obscuratur
9. Legio Draconorum Orkian
10. Natura Cadit
11. Charcharon (Damnosus Impetus)
12. Solvitur Ad Elfmuth (Ante Bellum)
13. Bellum (Humanes Resistentes Superavit)
14. Epilogus

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Zolfo Records

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