First and foremost, we can’t say we’ve never reviewed an album from Odense, Denmark anymore. From out of the blue, comes an awesome 4 song EP called Alpha from the band, NORD– a high energy, 5-piece, progressive, melodic metal band.
I was actually supposed to review this about a month ago, but it fell by the wayside. Better late than never?
On to the music:
Alpha kicks off with “Kill the Marshalls”, a very diverse tune clocking in at just over 4 minutes. Yet, in just 4:35, the band showcases their full arsenal of extremely diverse sounds. Vocally, the entire EP is very impressive. The vocalist displays a very broad spectrum for both clean and harsh vocals.
Then, in terms of guitar, we get mostly clean channel intros, followed by a variety of distorted prog/melodic riffs- producing many different feelings throughout each track’s duration. The rhythm section doesn’t just hang in the background either. The bassist stands out quite often, through a handful of bass breaks and some fills during buildups, none of which feel forced or out of place.
Moving on to drums, it’s worth mentioning that NORD had drummer, Magnus Elisson tracking on Alpha, but have since then acquired Rune Kolsbjerg Hansen for all future live duties. As for the performance on this EP, the drums are solid as a rock, complimenting each riff perfectly. The footwork in the syncopated sections of the album is quite impressive, showcasing several unique patterns coming in and out of sections. The drums also deliver great power in the slower, doom sections that come and go. The intro of the final track, “Omega” is a perfect example. In fact, this is one staple that NORD tends to revert back to consistently, amidst all their melodic and progressive riffing: deep, commanding guttural vocals layered over slow doom riffs and a crushing rhythm section.
For all my local metalheads in Buffalo and Rochester, I’d recommend NORD to fans of Darkapathy, The Highest Leviathan, The Crypt, Sun Black Smoke or Weaponex.
I’ve never been one for rating systems, but I’ll give it a shot due to popular demand. I’ll give Alpha a 4/5. I can’t say I’ve never heard tunes like this before, but it’s such a fun listen due to the way NORD blends all of their influences and musical vibes together to make these cool songs.
Alpha is to be released on March 3, 2017.
Niels Thybæk-Hansen – Guitar
Thomas Bøgh Jensen – Guitar
Peter Littau – Bass
Bjarne Brogaard Matthiesen – Vocals
Rune Kolsbjerg Hansen- Drums
Stay tuned for more, but for now, I’ll close this out with some of NORD’s music: