Review from Metal Temple

Posted by Nick Skog on Friday, June 17, 2022 Under: English
From: Metal Temple
Published: June 16, 2022

NOTTURNO is an Italian black metal band who formed this year; "Obsessions," is their debut release. Black metal has grown into a diverse and expansive genre so labeling this album such doesn't really give the full idea as to what these three tracks encompass. The album, which speaks of compulsions that take shape within our lives, depressive, bleak and dark as hell.  Giving the subject matter that is no real surprise. They tread these waters well, using the theme to their advantage to push their sound forward. Along with the darkness, the album brings in melancholic tones and a thick atmospheric pressure that blankets the three tracks.

As such, there is a doom metal aspect to the song writing, particularly with the sometimes slow speed and structure of the songs. All three songs are long with opening intros that buildup up over time. There is care and devotion to their craft, evident in the fact of the build up all leads to big pay offs. Musically it is as dynamic as is expected. There are plenty of destructive moments but they are intertwined among a lot of clean notes and quiet whispers.

The first track, "Fear," opens with these cleaner, more subdued moments. The drums provide a simple but solid foundation, which bolster up the song to prepare it for the next transformation. As the music begins to build itself up, vocalist Kjiel's voice begins at a raspy whisper as if she is haunting the songs. Around the five minute mark, double bass and distortion pierce the quiet atmosphere.  The vocals switch to blackened shrieks, matched in intensity by Vittorio Sabelli's deadly tone. The song changes to an atmospheric passage where the bass pushes the way through for the song to smoothly transitions to more clean moments. Very well done but with Sven Vinatieri’s ability to back up the rhythm in any style, it isn't a surprise. The last few minutes sees the band playing vicious black metal—the mood of the song culminating into this brutal passage.

“Darkness," is the shortest of the three songs but no less effective. Its impact is more immediate, eschewing a long build up for a more direct approach. It is dark and heavy more psychologically somber than the heavier parts we've heard so far.  The band even throws in melody during the faster pieces and it works so well, creating a truly lost feeling of despair. Beautiful keys mix with the clean instrumentation for the mid part of the song—it might be dark but it is gorgeous in its own way.  The final moments end on a dirge of riffs and despondent melodies, not unlike some of the darker types of post-metal.

"Falling" has a more structured clean opening than the first track, taking a more intricate musical route this time rather than teetering on the edge of vagueness. The acoustic guitars is very slick and fits into the song with ease. Soon though, blackened fury takes over for one of the best parts of the album. The terrifically pain and frustration filled vocals bring out the best of the music. This is a song where the band compliments each other, feeding off the very ebb and flow of their creations. The melodic guitar holds it all together yet pushes it to the cavernous ambient section which in turn sets the music up for a return to blackened skies.

NOTTURNO's "Obsessions" may be a somewhat short album but it is still absolutely monumental  and deep. Fans of extreme metal who are looking for an album that effectively mixes several styles together into one cohesive force, need to get on this.

Rating: 9/10
Reviewed by: Justin "Witty City" Wittenmeier

In : English 

Tags: "notturno" "notturno obsessions" "notturno music" "notturno black metal" "dawn of a dark age" "italian black metal" 

 Released: April 29, 2022
Genre: Atmospheric Black Metal