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Nachash Play To Both Past And Present On “Phantasmal Triunity”


Nachash play a nasty and brutish breed of black metal, one that keeps close to the chest the primitive traditional heavy metal vibes of groups like Venom. Phantasmal Triunity, their debut LP, evades the mawkishness that sometimes comes with traditional heavy metal made in 2018, largely by clever incorporation of fragments of death metal. Often, the record feels like it’s emerging from that scalding furnace from before extreme metal’s sundering into its varying genres, where a group like Immolation might lay down a gnarl tremolo picked riff or Celtic Frost may offer a stargazing progressive lick in the middle of an otherwise lowbrow visceral proto-black metal rager. Listen to an exclusive premiere of Phantasmal Triunity below.

The two biggest elements Nachash bring to the table from their three reference genres is stargazing (or, in this case, voidgazing) and bestial grime. The vocals stay in the lower register and the bass and drums swing, decentering a sense of pure black metal. And the record benefits from it; like other contemporary bands in extreme metal, Nachash manages to find a blend of traditional, black, and death metal that feels simultaneously artful and beat-your-ass primitive, like a cracked and broken demo tape caught between the prog metal wizardry of peak Iron Maiden and the naive-art extreme metal of Darkthrone.

They don’t feel retro and they don’t fit into any real tradition; instead, they make contemporary extreme metal that feels just as capable of soundtracking a Luciferic chaos magick rite as it does the slaughtering of star-worshipping orcs below blackened twin suns. But what matters most, at the end of the day, is the solid songwriting. Riffs link effortlessly with one another, developing off each other rather than feelings wasted as interludes, and songs reach a natural conclusion rather than feeling endlessly padded out to fit genre preconceptions or unnaturally truncated for the same. The record is paced, feeling complete at a brief 37 minutes. A praise-worthy debut.

— Langdon Hickman

Phantasmal Triunity is out August 10th on Shadow Kingdom Records.

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