Nachtmystium Addicts: Black Meddle Pt. II

Nachtmystium Addicts: Black Meddle Pt. II
Continuing their four years and counting assault on black metal expectations, Blake Judd and Nachtmystium are back with this follow-up to what was their best album yet, 2008's Assassins: Black Meddle Part I. And, you guessed it, the sequel is now their top disc. Despite a useless intro (that's actually called "Intro") and a rather rote black metal call to arms in first track "High on Hate," shit gets interesting fast. Actually, shit gets interesting with about 18 seconds left in that song when a soaring, melodic guitar solo is combined with group chanting, a weird mix that sets the tone for amazing songs like "Nightfall" (where tambourines and black metal mix, finally) and "No Funeral," which is totally what would have happened on the Pretty in Pink soundtrack had John Hughes been a face paint proponent. And those are just the first three songs. Elsewhere, the band keep a black metal base but bring in catchy rock (the amazing "Addicts") and dabble in drawn-out, progressive songwriting ("The End Is Eternal," which can take you places, if you let it). When others attempt such genre hopping it sounds contrived and impossible to actually enjoy. When Nachtmystium do it, not only does it take black metal to new musical places, it also takes it to the ears of those who normally find it too monotonous. (Century Media)