Vile Nilotic Rites
BRUTAL TECH DEATH METAL: Egyptian academia death metal band, Nile, has gloriously returned to form with its ninth full-length affair, Vile Nilotic Rites, its first in four years. This band hasn’t sounded this vicious in years. Nile has returned to its skull crushing and catchy heaviness that the band hasn’t captured on its past few albums.
Gone from the band is guitarist/vocalist Dallas Toler-Wade, allowing a three pronged vicious vocal attack consisting of mainstay/leader/guitarist/vocalist Karl Sanders, guitarist/vocalist Brian Kingsland, and bassist/vocalist Brad Parris. Several factors contributed to this being a solid album: a collaborative songwriting team—which included new members Parris, brought on in 2015, and Kingsland joining in 2017—extensive pre-production that took a year, as well as impeccable production values.
Album opener “Long Shadows of Dread” immediately hits the listener square on the jaw with a dizzying array of blastbeats and rolling tom fills, massive, earth moving riffs, and vicious guttural vocals. It successfully captures the true Nile-esque ancient-sounding vibe. Second track “Oxford Handbook of Savage Genocidal Warfare” is a blistering aural assault from the start, while the evil, HBO series Rome inspired “Vile Nilotic Rites” continues hitting the listener with blunt force. The longest track on the album, the powerful “Seven Horns of War,” introduces a horn section/timpani percussion tandem, decorated with an evil vocal choir. “That Which Is Forbidden” contains Egyptian melodies courtesy of stringed instruments bağlama and the bouzouki, which Sanders plays selectively on certain tracks, while “Snake Pit Mating Frenzy” sounds exactly as the title suggests.
This is a great return to form for Nile, as the last two releases seemed to follow a formulaic pattern. Nile has been reinvigorated, as Vile Nilotic Rites proves that the band hasn’t run out of ideas just yet. ~ Kelley Simms