I had the good fortune to catch Nevalra live recently when they rolled into town on the Carach Angren tour package, and as the opening band they proved themselves worthy visionaries for the black metal facet of the metal world. Eames is a charismatic frontman and his passion for the band, and the music they exude, is visibly overflowing. The set that night was a prelim for the album, as they had built the set entirely of tracks from ‘Conjure The Storm’ so it was good to be able to wet my appetite for the arrival of the album in physical form.
So, back to the album. ‘Conjure The Storm’ opens with a grand symphonic segment sat atop of demonical machinery-esque blasts and church bells ringing, which all build the atmosphere dragging you into the opener. ‘Warchestra’ is a powerhouse and very reminiscent of Septicflesh at their best. Sprock provides a beast of a back bone on the bass and the vocals from Eames are powerful, delicate and commanding in equal measures. The track is one of the longest on the release but it absolutely pummels you from start to finish and it leaves you wanting more just as it concludes in an all too early finish.
‘….. Of Ruination’ is up next and it opens you up to a different style to the opener. This is more upbeat, fast paced, and has more of desperation to the vocals. This one is polar opposite to ‘Warchestra’ and sits more in the realms of reflecting the work produced by Napalm death. The vocals are scratchier and the guitars, drums and bass are all in unison, although they are producing a punchier, tinnier momentum than was first witnessed.
‘Conjure The Storm’ is pretty much unrelenting and treads the same path throughout. Maniacal vocals backed up by bombastic, epic, thrashy black metal at its finest, clinical and technical in equal parts.
The title track sees Andres Varas join the fray on vocals, a companion of Eames with his other band Thy Antichrist. The vocals are, as expected, different in their approach and delivery, they seem to be more rounded and inject slightly more rawness and vehement than Eames likes to exhibit. Mark Kloeppel of Misery Index and Scour Fame joins the fray as co-singer on ‘Prophet For Profit’ and the two vocal advocates work effortlessly to create a multi-faceted vehicle of raw demonic black beauty.
This beast has segments of extreme metal for all to appreciate and enjoy. They infuse elements of black, thrash and death. This ensemble from Missouri promised us in their live shows that they would be back on our shores in the near future; I well and truly hope that this wasn’t an empty promise, as exposure from these Americans definitely needs to snowball with massive momentum.
(8/10 Phil Pountney)