Nightwölf – Unleash The Beast EP
Kill Again Records
Release Date: 15/07/2020
Running Time: 25:41
Review by Victor Augusto
Sometimes I feel a mix of nostalgia and pride when I hear something related to traditional Heavy Metal. Probably, it happens because I started listening to Heavy Metal with bands like Iron Maiden and Manowar and this music was so present in my life when I was kid. I have to confess that it is not my favorite style nowadays, since I found all the energy and aggressiveness of Thrash and Death Metal, but I cannot help but enjoy and be proud of young bands starting their career, who represent so well those great bands from the 80’s. The band I am referring to is Nightwölf, from the city where I live (Brasilia, the capital of Brazil) with their debut release, “Unleash The Beast”, an incredible EP.
With the purest Heavy Metal, they are inspired mostly by Judas Priest, but there are good Accept and Queensrÿche influences. First, it is important to highlight the extreme quality of guitarists Adan Hessen and Rafael Roan, which alternate and complement each other with excellent bass and guitar solos. They bring something similar of that magical chemistry between great guitar players like Adrian Smith with Dave Murray or Glen Tipton with K.K. Downing. Another good example is in ‘Shadowmaker’, where you can hear something more akin to Michael Weikath and Kai Hansen, with similar leads that Helloween used to play during the ‘Keeper of the Seven Keys’ era. It is just a matter of influence!
The distorted bass of Guilherme de Almeida could easily disappear between two killer guitarists, but his parts sound loud and are inspired by the bassists of the two bands already mentioned in the first paragraph of this review. Should I mention Lemmy Kilmister in his sonority? No, because I MUST mention it. At least I had this impression in ‘Perpetual Crime’, which is a more rhythmical song that has some isolated bass lines by Guilherme that totally refer to ‘Stay Clean’ (Motörhead). I’ve also mentioned Accept in this review, haven’t I? Yes! You Just have to hear ‘Halls Of Hell’ to understand what I am talking about and I could also notice in “Lunam et Sanguis’, the instrumental track that opens this EP, a great reference to the beautiful ‘The Crown And The Ring’ from Manowar.
Still talking about band members, the drummer João Videira (the man of a thousand clones*) creates good tempo changes being very versatile and far from repetitive and lead singer Jack Znake gives a wonderful showing and sings with his hugely powerful voice. The coolest thing is that he doesn’t sound exhausted, like those who abuse the high range notes, something that is very typical in these genres. He opts for an interpretation that shows a big difference. Both his visual, in the promotional picture of the band, and his voice reminds me of Eric Adams (again) from Manowar, who for me, is the best singer that ever existed in this style. One detail that I noticed is that the mix leaves the volume of the voice a little further back than usual, perhaps to highlight the instruments, but everything is very well equalized.
All the tracks are exciting. Some are faster and others opt for heaviness with great cadence The main thing here is that the band have managed to use many influences and have created a good mix, with the instrumental being above average and not sounding lost. I believe that the production, although good, still doesn’t capture all the power from Nightwölf. Perhaps, a clearer production with more heaviness to rescue the excitement that the compositions offer would work, but these are just details with a perfectionist vision.
We are talking about musicians with an enviable technique. On their debut release, they have kicked ass to make “Unleash The Beast”. Can you Imagine what they will be able to do in the future? The beast has, most definitely, been unleashed!
(*This is a joke from the day I drank so much at a concert and I said hello to five different people that I thought were João Videira due to the similarities between them. Actually, João wasn’t there that day. He was at home! 😊)
1. Lunam et Sanguis
2. Unleash The Beast
4. Perpetual Crime
5. Halls Of Hell
6. Holy Machine
Jack Znake – Vocal
Adan Hessen – Guitar
Rafael Roan – Guitar
Guilherme de Almeida – Bass
João Videira – Drums
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