When you’re blessed with a strong local scene it is easy to become blasé towards smaller touring bands. I mean this with the greatest respect but you see local gigs as ‘good nights out’ as oppose to the fact that the artists you’re seeing having real talent. Having acknowledged this fact myself I’ve taken the time to become a bit more invested in the UK’s underground Metal scene, alas a great admiration has developed perhaps most notably for bands like Raised By Owls, Visions Of Disfigurement, Mechromorph and Suffering. It’s easy to forget that some towns don’t have such dedicated scenes whereby these artists freely pass. So please support these small shows as they are the beating heart of our worldwide community.

Rant over we come to speak today of another UK based band whom I’ve grown rather fond of. The oceanic and mythological Black Metal northerners Necronautical. The band formed in 2010 and after some four years crafted their debut full length Black Sea Misanthropy. Following this in 2016 came the underground gem The Endurance At Night which again was met with much praise. Now under the banner of Candlelight Records the band unleash their third full length Apotheosis, but can it see the band plunder the mighty depths or will it see them fall beneath the jolly roger.

All Is Vanity sets the scene with its haunting, almost ambient introduction which slowly makes way for the Black Metal waves of darkness. Traditional yet melodic and hook heavy riffs swirl about amid a storm of drumming taking us down into the abyss. Sea puns aside this is a powerful and strong opening number full of old school Black Metal flare that is elevated through a shimmering production and some aggressive vocals. Speaking of vocals we are graced with clean vocals in the track Nihil Sub Sole Novum, they almost appear to draw inspiration from ICS Vortex of ex-Dimmu Borgir fame. This welcome addition sees the bands more Symphonic Black Metal edge elevated.

Sailing onward we eventually come to the catchy guitar work of the title track a massive, epic modern Black Metal banger that gives the UK’s current Extreme Metal scene a fantastic name. One testament to the bands songwriting abilities is that not a single track on this release falls beneath six minutes, yet most appear to be kept fresh and invigorating. Closing track The Endless Spiral marks the bands final voyage, following on from two less impressive tracks this crashing storm barges in with great bombast. A fitting end to an album that will surely see this band discovering new lands.

Thus my point is proven, place your faith upon the local and the small. Whilst this may be a preached statement to the converted I feel it is all too true. We often forget that bands have to start somewhere and it isn’t until they arise with some sort of recognition via a strong album or group of musicians that we appear to care. Let this no longer be the case, of course we shouldn’t support those whom we deem unworthy but in such a case as Necronautical we should rally behind them and aid them in achieving greatness.

(8/10 George Caley)