Review 1908 : Heretoir – Nightsphere – English

Heretoir signs its second release of the year.

After a short EP released in May, 2023 is also the year for Eklatanz (vocals/guitar, ex-Agrypnia, live for Austere, Dornenreich), Nathanael (bass/vocals, Bonjour Tristesse, ex-King Apathy, ex-Thränenkind), Max F. (guitar, ex-King Apathy, ex-Thränenkind), Nils Groth (drums, Emissary of Suffering, ex-Fäulnis, ex-Ophis, ex-Thränenkind) and Kevin Storm (guitar, Fleetburner, ex-Heidevolk, live for Gaerea, Kalmah, Saor, Shining…) to announce the release of their third album, Nightsphere, on AOP Records.

The band is also joined on vocals by Nikita Kamprad (Der Weg Einer Freiheit, live for Los Males del Mundo).

Sanctum – Nightsphere Part I begins in soothing gentleness, letting a clean guitar and some ambient keyboards accompany us before joining in with the rest of the band, including haunting vocals. Gripping howls suddenly appear, prompting the rhythm section to step up and adopt haunting choruses, creating a strong contrast with the more aggressive passages while remaining in tune with the majestic moments, then Twilight of the Machines takes over, welcoming Tim Yatras (Austere, Autumn’s Dawn). The track keeps this slow, almost soothing approach, only disturbed by the howls that darken it until the calm break before the visceral explosion with Old School roots that highlights the various voices that get lost in dissonance, before finally letting Pneuma inundate us with its luminous sounds. Exclusively instrumental, the interlude lets us enjoy its ethereal, soaring keyboards before Glacierheart – Nightsphere Part II brings saturation back to life with immediately heady and catchy tones, where the various vocal parts once again wander. Yet at over ten minutes long, the composition is so natural that it seems to flash from quietude to deep, instinctive fury, letting one respond to the other as it leads us past its climax to The Death of Man, the final composition, which begins by oppressing us with a thick sound followed by much simpler, purer tones that eventually disappear into the distance.

Heretoir reminded me how fascinated I was by their previous album. Nightsphere, with its similar, contradictory and opposed elements, offers a certainly different, but just as striking and contemplative approach.


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