Nile – “What Should Not Be Unearthed” (Nuclear Blast Records)
Gotta admit, I’m kinda biased when it comes to Nile, as they were signed at The Expo Of The Extreme festival that I was involved with back in the late 90s. Along with those of us who were mesmerized by their blinding technical ferocity, Relapse Records were clearly also taken with their majesty and duly signed them right after their set! These days Nile are on Nuclear Blast and now onto their 8th album, but pretty much doing the same thing. Still taken with Middle Eastern myths and culture that also pervade the rich riffs and deep rhythms to create an ancient atmosphere characterizing much of their material, Nile’s eastern taste is matched by jaw dropping levels of complex, technical death metal played at unbelievable speed! From dark, accursed riffs to exotic, twisting solos, founder guitarist Karl Sanders harsh rasping vocals add the perfect touch to evoke vivid images of strange eastern cultures, mystical gods and the sands of time themselves!! Always driven by incredible drumming right from the days of original Egyptian drummer Pete Hammoura, these days Greek sticksman George Kollias is the man machine delivering propelling precision double bass beats along with a blurring technical mix of snare, tom and cymbal work – truly masterful and in itself worth getting the album for alone. Despite having a defined trademark sound, Nile are a band that I can never, ever get bored of given the epic, brutal nature of the east they bring time and again in songs like ‘In The Name Of Amun’, ‘To Walk Forth From Flames Unscathed’ and ‘Evil To Cast Out Evil’. Along with elite levels of breathtaking musicianship, they are almost as legendary as the pharaohs themselves!!