Old @ Down with the Nails Review

Old
Down with the Nails
Peaceville Records/Tyrant Syndicate Productions
2006

After the warm reception of Aura Noir’s The Merciless two years ago, Fenriz and Nocturno Culto have once again decided to join efforts in order to bring you a slab of old-school Black Metal. But unlike their Norwegian peers, Old are here presenting their debut album, a collection of songs that more or less fit into the traditional sound explored by Darkthrone, early Celtic Frost and Slaughter- even the track Empire in Flames starts with a riff that is, basically, similar to the opener of Darkthrone’s Triumphant Gleam, so no doubt is left of what these Germans have concocted here.
Coming from the northern town of Hessen, Old were formed in 2003 and, apparently, have gained a nearly cult-status after they released the Blood Skull rehearsal tape, which not only grabbed the attention of Darkthrone, but also allowed them to record the Nocturnal Ritual EP for Undercover last year.
Down with the Nails also follows Darkthrone’s “production values” by the book, as it was recorded in exactly three days at Toxomusic Studios, in Germany, and mixed by the band itself. Not only that, but it also outlaws any monumental or majestic keyboard lines, as well as some over-polished and epic sounding production. But, technical aspects aside, I really enjoyed this record: not just because it reminds me of the aforementioned bands, or some other 80s’ acts, but because it comes in a time where this sort of sound has become quite overlooked in detriment of technicality and progression within the more extreme spheres of the Metal contingent.
I think it’s always great to find out that there are still people willing to give a shit about this sort of sonority, without falling into the ridicule of self delusions. Recommended.

Peaceville Records

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