Demonaz: March of the Norse
30/04/12 || Cobal
Demonaz Doom Occulta needs no introduction, nor need I to recall the reasons why this icon plays no longer with Immortal. A decade after his departure from the band he formed along with Olve Eikemo, Demonaz got us with our pants down and out of nowhere, and released a demo of his homonym new project.
This promotional release seemed promising, mainly because it was nothing like Immortal reloaded or shit. But hey, we all wanted at least one full length album before judging this monster, right? Finally, last year, “March of the Norse” was out, and hell, there were many eagerly waiting for it. It has easily become one of my regular albums to listen, and that’s sayin’ something with regard to a freak that listens to and discards hundreds of releases per year, literally.
I must admit I didn’t quite get it at first since I was expecting some sort of a technical metal record, obviously due to my background on Demonaz’ guitar playing. I know, I know he’s NOT playing guitar anymore, yet one could expect he would look for a super gifted guitarist who could brag his skills by playing impossible riffs and solos. One could be mistaken as well, I was.
“MotN” is rather a hyper melodic, epic form of heavy – viking metal based on simple but profound riffs and structures, twin guitar solos, mid-paced to slow songs, inspired yet repetitive lyrics, and Demonaz himself’s beeriest vocals, all covered with a freezing and tasty dressing of liquid metal that not anyone can taste.
I wouldn’t say this is a fun record, as a matter of fact it has a pretty solemn feeling, but it’s quite pleasant. It’s got something, aside the twin soloing of course, that resembles of Maiden, and that reprocessed as it is, it gives a unique touch to the album.
It’s a fact that listening to a simple musical pattern once and again can induce you to a trance state. Simple as they are the cuts here have that effect, and actually, having gone over this beast several, several times, I’ve drawn the conclusion that the way the album is organized works based on that effect and that it was planned. It’s as though each song were a riff and “MotN” were ONE single 9 riffs song that unfolds in a crescendo reaching its highest point in “Over the Mountains”.
By the way, “Over the Mountains” is a fucken killer song. I simply loved the way it got me with its opening riff (that resembles a lighter version of some Immortal’s song… ) only to almost immediately switch to a more melodic_ spacious_ one, the same that introduces the chorus, which truth be told is quite simpleton, except the game voice plays with the rhythm guitar is exhilarating.
“The March of the Norse” is a very nice record, yet that’s not al there is to it; let’s face it, Demonaz didn’t forge his legend on his great vocals, and if it’s true he doesn’t really suck, it’s even truer we were all missing him… as a guitar player. Vocals are just OK, and that’s that. Now, sadly, none of the songs works by itself; being simple as they are, and the same way it happens with most of bm and vm albums, you need to lay down and embrace the music to quite appreciate it.
All in all, I would seriously advice anyone to give this one a shot, knowing the kind of music they’re to find here. It’s a good effort; let’s just hope this will precede a series of great albums. Cheers.
- Released: 2011
- Label: Nuclear Blast
- Website: Demonaz MySpace
- Demonaz: vocals
- Ice Dale: guitars, bass
- Armagedda: drums
- 01. Northern Hymn
- 02. All Blackened Sky
- 03. March of the Norse
- 04. A Son of the Sword
- 05. Where Gods Once Rode
- 06. Under the Great Fires
- 07. Over the Mountains
- 08. Ode to Battle
- 09. Legends of Fire and Ice
- 10. Dying Sun [bonus track]