Primordial "To the Nameless Dead" CDPosted on Thursday, January 17th, 2008 @ 6:17am » permalink
Ireland's Primordial is yet another band that I simply haven't followed closely enough over the years, and "To the Nameless Dead" (released by Metal Blade), their sixth full-length album, proves that I have no good excuse whatsoever for that fact. It's been five or six years since I last heard Primordial (granted I only missed one album during that period), at which time I was already discovering their work late in the game, but apparently they're among that elite breed of musicians that continues to improve at such a late stage in their existence by releasing impressively powerful albums.
The hour-long journey is made up of lengthy tracks that average about seven minutes apiece and at the highest level can only be described as creatively uncategorizable metal, which is of course a great niche for any band to fall into in this day and age where the vast majority of material can be easily tagged with this or that combination of genres. In many ways a lot of the tempos are powered by sweeping, melodic midpaced waves with occasional surges of speed or subtly atmospheric breaks, but the rhythms do flirt with some superb Drudkh-esque black metal riffing or sparse appearances of lush acoustic guitars on occasion. It all adds up to an array of bombastic intensity and epic vocal performances that actually reminds me of Neurosis to some degree. Of course the two bands basically sound nothing alike whatsoever, but there's still something about this album in particular – the subject matter, of course, but it's more than that – that makes me draw a parallel between the two groups as some sort of strange, disparate kindred spirits, if that makes any sense?
I don't know, I'm just rambling now, but whatever the case, this is an excellent album, and I need to finally go back and properly investigate Primordial's roots to learn where this all came from and find out what I may have missed. There's so much more to be said for this album, but I feel like you really need to hear it for yourselves to understand, so… that's what the sample below is for:
The sea will be as a desert when my bones are long to dust, beneath shifting dunes and the searing unconquerable son. Pile the bodies on the pyre, warm the old heart of the earth. This is no place for faith, nor for hope. Just a journey through the darkest of nights, to the old heart of the earth. These are wounds made by cold hands that know the bite of steel, hands that have rendered life extinct and punished the weak at heart. Tell me what nation on this Earth is not born of tragedy? That has not felt such harsh weapons wielded by cruelty's desire?