At The Gate of Sethu
As they approach the twentieth year of their existence, South Carolina’s Egyptology-obsessed death metallers Nile are showing no signs of slowing down, returning once again with their seventh album, ‘At The Gate of Sethu’. First impressions of ‘Sethu’ suggest it lacks the initial explosive power of some of Nile’s previous releases, yet it still possesses enough magik from the fast hands of Karl Sanders and Dallas Toler-Wade to continue to devastate as per what we’ve come to expect from Nile.
The lack of perceived initial firepower might well stem from what seems – whisper it – a slightly accessible feel to it. Yes, it’s still absolutely brutal, but the average song length is slightly down, no huge, long dirges as per ‘Those Whom The Gods Detest’ and ‘In Their Darkened Shrines’, for example, and the resulting compactability certain makes the songs that tiny bit more imprintable on the mind in a strange, catchy sense. That doesn’t mean that Nile are any softer, mind – their palette this time just emphasises the technical aspect a little more, and Sanders and Toler-Wade displaying exactly why they’re regarded as one of the finest shred-combos in death metal. The musicianship is extremely tight once again, with regular fast tempos employed with absolutely clinical blasts of guttural aggression. The occasional clean vocals are thrown in again too and work exceptionally well. Yes, its still Nile as we know and love, but credit for them for challenging themselves on every record.
Summarising, ‘At The Gate of Sethu’ certainly isn’t Nile’s finest work, but it’s far from shoddy – at least Nile refuse to become stagnant and continue to try things most death metal bands can only dream of.
Nile – The Gods Who Light Up the Night Sky at the Gate of Sethu