Nekromant are the product of a Swedish band that went by the name of Serpent, and they’ve got a very doomy product out fresh from the oven. The Nekromant Lives is the title, and can be summed up simply as a sadder Pentagram or Black Sabbath. While a lot of traditional doom tries to reside on the darker end of the spectrum, Nekromant sheds a little more light in their sound, and has more emotion with sorrowful hints sprinkled in. Moreover, this could not be achieved without spacier influence and the help of newer technology that would allow such a clear atmosphere to be possible.
Before I get too ahead of myself, don’t go in thinking that this is a gaze-driven or depressing album, because it’s anything but that, and the vocals are still somewhat reminiscent of Ozzy Osbourne. The thing that makes this stand apart is the whiny nature of some of the riff work. Take “Scorpio” as an example, with the way that the bridges have such a clean approach with more minor tones, avoiding sounding scary but still not very happy. The vocals, however, do work as a good supplement with this playing style. The singer has a very clear and concise delivery, and it resonates very well with the guitar licks.
If it still isn’t convincing enough, the heavy never gets turned off, and speed occasionally makes its way in as well. The title track and album opener provides a lot of energy to get the ball rolling, and those who seek more traditional heavy metal could get a lot out of this as well. Lyrics touching on monsters and mysterious occult-like things are present, just not delivered in a dark way at all. The only real downfall that The Nekromant Lives suffers is the fact that some of the writing comes off as very vanilla, and it takes a while to really let this sink in. In other words, this album is a grower.
After a couple spins, though, this should tickle the fancy of both those who dig doom metal and heavy metal alike. The nice thing is that because of its bright nature, it would be very accessible for those who aren’t into heavier music, and could be a great gateway into the genre. Don’t expect it to be one hundred percent traditional of either genre, but certainly look for that as the base ingredient.
The Nekromant Lives came out on October 9th, 2018 through Ripple Music and can be found here on the label’s website.