Tuesday 11 October 2016

Al-Namrood/Dakestrah - Akyr Zaman/Tajer Al Punqia


1. Darkestrah - Akyr Zaman
2. Al-Namrood - Tajer Al Punqia I
3. Al-Namrood - Tajer Al Punqia II

I tried to get this written up and published last night but had some connection issues. Thankfully, everything is back to normal this evening. I'm kicking off my latest series of reviews, which I'm splitting into two halves. The first half featuring some releases that are more out of the ordinary than usual and the second, which will feature four death metal reviews. This split release came out earlier this year via Canadian label Shaytan Productions. It features one song by Kyrgyzstani/German black metal band Darkestrah and two from Saudi Arabian black metallers Al-Namrood (one of only twelve extreme meta band's from the country, if Metal Archives is correct). 

Darkestrah promises anti-christian black metal with folk influences. Akyr Zaman begins with plenty of Eastern atmosphere and instrumentation. It’s very cinematic, even when the harsh vocals begin to take hold. Darkestrah’s bombast can be heard clearly in the recording and it’s volume. The mix of extreme metal and traditional instrumentation is nothing new but here the two are used in great harmony, without sounding contrived. The progressive nature of both band and song works well, especially because Akyr Zaman is quite a long song. It’s safe to say that Al-Namrood comes as a bit of shock after that. The Saudi Arabian lyrics delivered in such a harsh semi-clean manner on Tajer Al Punqia I isn’t for the faint of heart. The music underneath is once again filled with traditional instrumentation and I can picture tribesman dancing to this at ancient rituals. Despite my simplistic attempts at painting a picture, this is strangely catchy. By the time Tajer Al Punqia II comes around, you’ll be more comfortable with Al-Namrood. It’s far from unpleasant but the vocals take some getting used too. Musically they are spot on. This is definitely a split of two halves, from the sublime to the bizarre. Neither Darkestrah or Al-Namrood are new names within the wider scene, but I strongly recommend that you give both of them a chance if you haven’t heard them before. 

You can stream the split and purchase it digitally and on cd via Shaytan Productions below:-

Al-Namrood Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/AL-NAMROOD
Darkestrah Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/darkestrahofficial/
Shaytan Productions Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/Shaytan-Productions

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