Nidingr – The High Heat Licks Against Heaven Review

Nidingr may have their roots set in the rise of the second wave of black metal but their unique sound is anything but anachronistic. Energetically pushing the boundaries between technical brilliance and conservative melodies Nidingr have continuously delivered brutal riffs with due refrain while essentially carrying the black flag further into the future claiming the pinnacle of a new unholy norwegian black metal.

nidingrAlthough a bit of a mouthful new album The High Heat Licks Against Heaven is a bright spark in a world of darkness. Fiercely illuminating the nuances of a genre now reserved for psychological labels. It’s not that type of black metal album however. The expressive ensemble is at a height where it resonates with solid disciplined aggression. Brutality is a shade for many colours and the sound of Nidingr’s new album takes that to the extreme causing a fire inside to ignite as soon as the first bar commences.

Saying it’s a blast from start to finish is an understatement, and also strangely ironic. While the genre is notorious for using blastbeats extraneously and at every opportunity, and Nidingr are definitely not above this, this album as intense and honest as it is shows a more verbose side to the powerful Norwegians. With their unquestionable and definitive guitar sound that shares it’s pitch with a plague of locusts the sonal progression on The High Heat Licks Against Heaven is perpetually interesting enough to hold the structure of the album together with comprehensive solvency. Even as they unapologetically dabble in more melodic techniques the architecture remains ominous and fearlessly dynamic.

Evolving, expanding and exponential to their previous efforts The High Heat Licks Against Heaven is more than just your usual flint and a bail of sticks black metal. Truly setting the horizon of what to expect from the genre alight. It’s heritage; It’s Viking lore; It’s a reiteration of stories that Snorri Sturluson thought important enough to tell through the Poetic Edda and ones that Nidingr feel are significant to delve into and translate to music, but most of all however: it’s true Norwegian black metal.

Nidingr are ultimately a supergroup but not because of who’s playing but because of how they play, and they play hard and fast. At times the new album might offer meditative reprieve, unlike previous efforts, during their songs but make no mistake because this is resolutely polished black music with bloody edges.

10/10

About David Oberlin 312 Articles
David Oberlin is a composer and visual artist who loves noise more than a tidy writing space. You can often find him in your dankest nightmares or on twitter @DieSkaarj while slugging the largest and blackest coffee his [REDACTED] loyalty card can provide.

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