NOTORIUS - Rage and Fail (GODEATER - CD 2015)
It looks like I’ve been through quite a lot of raw black metal releases lately, more than in a long time I think. The quality of bands from this genre is always disputable and you just cannot be sure, if it will be a total worthless piece and waste of time or something genius. Lately I had some killer stuff, like Szron for example, but also some crap, which is not even worthy of mentioning. But here’s another cool black metal stuff, from a German band called Notorius. I already knew them from the second demo “The Prophets of False”, which was quite decent material, so I pretty much knew what to expect from this band. But I think that “Rage and Fail”, which is the newest EP, is way, way better. As I see it, basically everything about the music of Notorius has been improved; all the technical aspects, as well as the songwriting… yeah, definitely it’s another killer German black metal band, which I must recommend!
Production wise “Rise and Fail” is just spotless, I think. Great guitar tone and generally very powerful production, but still on the rawer side, what fits the music perfectly. When comparing “Rise and Fail” to “The Prophets of False”, the demo sounds like a garage rehearsal, really, nothing as good as this EP! Music wise also… I mean the demo was cool, but rather typical simplistic raw black metal. “Rise and Fail” has much more original and developed style of black metal, somehow reminding me Nachtmahr, as well as one of my favourite, if not THE FAVOURITE, German band Helrunar, from their earlier works (but minus all the acoustics, etc), spiced maybe with a very small dose of another of killer acts, Secrets of the Moon. And please, take that as a compliment, as I am a great fan of those acts and I think Notorius is great also. I think that all those bands have very similar aura in their music, which is obviously very dark and grim, and also they have these riffs that are combining the aggression with sort of hypnotizing melody, so it’s quite diverse and not as one dimensional, not focused just on the harsh black metal. Notorius may still be slightly more primeval than Helrunar, like in the song “Act III (Manifest - Der Tod ist Unser)”, but then such “Act I (A Lion is Born)”, “Act II (Katharsis)” and “Act V (White Theme)” are quite close. Especially the first track is something what sticks in the memory for long, with its possessing melodies, it’s just a perfect tune! It’s also the most diverse song here, I think, as it opens with sort of almost post black metal theme, which quickly speeds up with awesome furious riffs, but still having that slightly melancholic melody in the background. Very nice, indeed.
Basically I think that Notorius came up with really great material; the riffs are great, so are the arrangements and the song structures, which – as I mentioned before – are more original than your typical, mediocre black metal primitive stuff. This is great development! I like all songs here and to be honest, even though it’s just a 20 plus minutes EP, I played it a lot today. And I only wish it was a longer material, as I would love to hear more from Notorius.
Standout tracks: “Act I (A Lion is Born)”, “Act V (White Theme)”
Final rate: 85/100