Review 2131 : Necrophobic – In the Twilight Grey – English

Necrophobic celebrates the release of its tenth album.

To celebrate their 35th anniversary, the Swedish band featuring Joakim Sterner (drums, Unhallow), Anders Strokirk (vocals, ex-Blackshine, ex-Mykorrhiza), Sebastian Ramstedt (guitar, In Aphelion, ex-Nifelheim), Johan Bergebäck (guitar, In Aphelion, AngelBlast, ex-Nifelheim, ex-Dismember) and Tobias Cristiansson (bass, Darkened, ex-Dismember, ex-Grave) unveil In the Twilight Grey in collaboration with Century Media Records.

Matte Modin (drums, Defleshed, ex-Dark Funeral, ex-Firespawn, ex-Sarcasm) occasionally helps for live performances.

The band begins by mesmerizing us with an eerie yet intoxicating melody on opening track Grace of the Past, before moving into their usual frantic pace. The vindictive vocals are perfectly matched to the cold, razor-sharp ambience of the riffs, which don’t hesitate to include Old School influences in their intense harmonics, while Clavis Inferni draws on dark vivid Thrash to energize its rhythm and give it that jerky approach. Epic leads carry us through to As Stars Collide and its mysterious introduction, which gradually transforms into majestic sounds to which the musicians add their piercing touch while keeping the ambient darkness, then pure rage resurfaces with Stormcrow, a much faster composition. The chorus soothes the atmosphere and gives it a unifying edge, then the rhythm slows down to let the guitars express themselves, returning to their original fury only before giving way to the long, intriguing Shadows of the Brightest Night, which naturally bursts into flame, regularly adding ominous leads to complete its continuous stream of darkness. The band allows us a very brief moment of respite before Mirrors of a Thousand Lakes fills the air with its anguished guitars, whether with scathing harmonics or crazier, more worked patterns, then Cast in Stone returns to exploit its rawer and more abrasive roots without forgetting the power of its sharp melodies. The sound remains catchy while offering more melancholic tones with Nordanvind, a haunting composition barely disturbed by the rocky vocal parts and some motivating moments, then it’s with In the Twilight Grey, the eponymous track, that the band reveals all its nuances, coupling a furious pace with airy, hypnotic notes. Particular care is taken with the transcendental touches that accompany the final chorus, but the album already comes to an end with the short, heavy Ascension (Episode Four), where the oppressive atmosphere comes to life while the beginnings of a rhythmic pattern appear in the distance, then disappear.

Although I discovered Necrophobic relatively late, I’ve never been disappointed by their albums, and In the Twilight Grey doesn’t break the rule! Their dark art is definitely at its peak, and all we need is a few more concerts to confirm it!


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