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When's the last time you've actually had fun listening to a black metal album? Yeah, there's the whole aspect of "transcendance" for some and "misanthropy" for others. I get it, the majority of the genre is introspective and a source of exploring the inner self, but… is that truly fun? Even with the strictest, most frownworthy genre, there are always exceptions to the all-encompassing rule.

Some might not expect Australian multi-instrumentalist Bob "nksv" Nekrasov to make such fun music, his eponymous project finding solace in buzzing, crispy, enveloping noise textures, but Rebel Wizard is his own musical foil. Self-described as "negative metal," Rebel Wizard's melding of black and heavy metal sounds more like if the impetus of black metal's second wave was less critical, more context-based, and at least a little self-aware. On his latest EP, The Warning of One, this manifests as some unholy mixture of frigid, Norse melodies and riffs which would make KK Downing and Glenn Tipton grin. There are a lot of things which can be said about Rebel Wizard, but its all encompassing persona is fun. For something meant to be "negative," there is a sort of "checking out metal for the first time" vibe to this, even I found myself smiling and headbanging at my desk when listening to this. This is what black metal would sound like if it was a direct offshoot of classic heavy metal -- a separate timeline nostalgia or "what could have been" -- and maybe there should be more. At the very least, there should be more from Rebel Wizard.

The Warning of One is out August 18th on Prosthetic Records -- a rare cassette release for the label. You can stream closing track "One I Call" below.

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Follow Rebel Wizard on Facebook and Bandcamp.

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