Combining elements of the US and Swedish styles of fast, melodic black metal, Advocatus Diaboli is 46 minutes of scything, blistering music that quickly unfolds with attitude and its own dark light.
The songs are full of blackened melodies and emphatic leads. Fast and furious, blast beats appear when needed for extra emphasis, but they are not the norm.
The songs are well-written, and I like the fact that the more you hear from this talented band, the more they impress with their brand of black metal. On first impression they seem like any other number of melodic black metal acts, but this idea is quickly dispensed with as you soon realise that there are a lot of non-standard elements, influences, and ideas that have been incorporated into Advocatus Diaboli.
In addition to the usual second-wave black metal influences, there’s also a first-wave/classic metal feel to this, as well as a certain punk energy that can be felt in some of the riffs. Make no mistake, this is black metal through and through, but it’s good to hear some less-common influences make themselves felt in parts of the songs, enough to mark the band as doing something a little different from the norm in some ways.
This extends to the vocals too; these are deeper and more belligerent than you normally find on a release such as this, lending the sharp songs a blunter edge to their delivery that works surprisingly well considering I normally favour a more traditional high-pitched screaming approach for the vocals of a band like this. That’s not to say that the latter style, (and others), isn’t used, but there’s more of the former.
Alongside some of the less-typical influences mentioned previously, the vocal performance on Advocatus Diaboli is yet another way that The Noctambulant differentiate themselves from many of their peers.
With a strong, clear production, the music tears and cuts its way through the airwaves like a sleek predator hunting for prey. I very much enjoyed this release, and strongly suggest you give it a listen.