Nader Sadek Communes with Ancient Spirits on 'The Serapeum'

Nader Sadek Communes with Ancient Spirits on 'The Serapeum'
Egyptian-American artist Nader Sadek first scorched the scene in 2011 with his death-metal debut, In the Flesh. Despite the pandemic, Sadek has been steadily releasing new material this year, starting with "The Faithless" and "Mechanic" singles. Now, he's let loose The Serapeum, his first EP since 2014's The Malefic: Chapter III.

Sadek's revolving collaborators are the crème de la crème of the metal world, having included Steve Tucker (Morbid Angel), Alex Skolnick (Testament), Trym (Emperor), Flo Mounier (Cryptopsy) and Rune Eriksen (Mayhem). This time, he plays alongside Karl Sanders (Nile), Derek Roddy (Serpents Rise) and Mahmud Gecekusu (Perversion). 

A serapeum is an ancient temple dedicated to Serapis, the Egyptian god of fertility and the afterlife. Wanting to commune with the ancient spirits, Sadek actually recorded the vocals inside the Red Pyramid at Dahshur, sneaking audio equipment into the inner chamber. Backed by Sanders and his career-long Egyptian vision in Nile, the new material is forward-thinking death metal augmented with black metal elements and Middle Eastern embellishments.

"The Serapeum: Black Osiris" is high-powered death with furious guitar licks and blast beats, slowing down to a crawl that reeks of millennia-old bones. Nadek's guttural vociferations echo throughout the subterranean burial chambers in the brusque "ReSarcophogus." The swirling guitar tones of the intro to "The Serapeum: Polluted Waters" resemble Monster Magnet phoning in from a distant astral plane, but when the song lurches into brutality mode, Morbid Angel and Behemoth are immediately invoked. Technical death ensues in the final track, a searing live version of "The Serapeum."

Sadek delivers the expected savagery but with plenty of black-metal intrigue on The Serapeum, which is another step closer to his second full-length, The Malefic, due for release in 2021. (Independent)