Black Shape Of Nexus - Negative Black
For their third release, German sludge masters Black Shape of Nexus blend some new but still hard-hitting sounds into their massive aesthetic. "Negative Black" uses touches of ambient and harsh noise to enhance an already devastatingly slow, menacing attack, perhaps pointing the way for a further advancement of their sound in the future.
"Illinois" kicks it off in disturbing fashion, with a grinding Industrial groove that almost approaches pure noise.
"400H" almost sets the bar higher for what constitutes heavy, if that is possible. I say almost because statements like that are meaningless, but this is a stoopidly heavy, classic-level track."60 WV" is classic sludge, as slow and plodding as it gets. The twenty minute "10000" adds some prog touches to the sludge that don't always help, and in some ways diminish the power of the track, but the essential groove is too massive to be completely undermined. The murky "RMS" is a minimalist that shows another, but still dark and unsettling, side to Black Shape of Nexus. Another twenty minute track serves as the closer. "Neg. Black" is a fitting wind-up, as it draws from the ambient experiments used throughout "Negative Black" will taking its slow grim time in advancing the melody with intensely down-tuned doom, and occasional but really satisfying, Motorhead-like bursts of massive sound.
"Negative Black" is an overpowering, demanding listen but worth the effort, as with it Black Shape of Nexus remains one of the most compelling Sludge/Doom acts, one obviously willing to experiment. Most of the risks taken here offer grand, majestic payoffs.
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