Sound — 10
Nile is probably one of the most intense, creative and whimsical death metal bands out there. Hailing from South Carolina, more known for it's beaches and occasional hurricanes, you'll think to yourself: Nile? Egypt? South Carolina? Kittens? Well, you are correct. Don't let that fool you, these guys are 110% serious with their lyrical content on Egyptian history and mythology. "Those Whom the Gods Detest" is Nile's most brutal, fast, heavy and intense album to date, combining "Annihilation of the Wicked" and "Ithyphallic" elements with "Black Seeds of Vengeance" and In Their Darkened Shrines". Either way, this was the next evolutionary step in the band's path. To be honest, I was afraid of Nile releasing another album. I was so into Ithyphallic (2007) for the past two years, that it Ithyphallic had to be, the be all, end all for me. I just couldn't imagine anything else being able comparable, let alone, surpass the excellence of Ithyphallic. Karl Sanders, Dallas Toler-Wade and George Kollias are the members of Nile for those of you who have just heard of the band. Karl (Guitars/Vocals), Dallas (Guitars/Vocals), George (BEAST, Drums). I'll give you a quick run down on the musicianship of this album. MAGNIFIQUE. Such great guitar tone in this album. Believe me, I live for strong guitar tone, and these guys have nailed it. The riffs themselves are just brilliant. Fast, heavy, technical and head-bangable. The solos are crazy, but in a good way. They are shredding ripping leads with unusual and unconventional scales. Now for the drums. George Kollias. All hail George, a modern Greek God. What's their to say about Kollias? Nothing. Unfortunately, the English language lacks a word that is equivalent to his performance on this album. Filled with nasty fills, rude quads and blasts, any death metal drummer would cry at the amazing things he is able to do. The greatest part however, is the drum tone. Clear, solid, but at the same time totally acoustic. Some death metal drummers can trigger too much, but besides the bass drums. This album is totally kick ass from a drum point-of-view.
Lyrics — 10
Well, well, well. Lyrics. Figure it out guys, "Nile". What on earth could they be singing about? I'll give you three guesses, but you'll only need one. That's right, Egypt. More specifically, ancient Egyptian mythology and history. More of the same on this album as other albums, as they stay true to their interests. One song however, takes a different turn. "Kafir" deals mostly with Islam, rather than Egypt it's self. Long story short, "Kafiristan" is a province in Afghanistan that resisted Islamic expansion up until 1895. Hell, they even with stood Alexander.. Alexander, THE GREAT. Yeah. So a little bit of a different direction for these guys, but Karl's explanation of the purpose and true meaning of this song is good enough for me to accept it on this album. The vocals themselves are great as per usual. The combination of Dallas' more clearer vocal style with Karl's more old-school, early Cannibal Corpse vocal style, this is sure to make and death-growl fan extremely pleased.
Overall Impression — 10
Hmm, where to start.. first off, one of the, if not THE, best album of 2009. It's hard to decide between this or Behemoth's "Evangelion". Everything about this album is right. I can't think of a single thing that would make this album any better. It's just too good to be true. I know I sound like I'm just drooling over this album, but trust me; listen to it, them come back and talk to me. They have gone all out on this album. I hate to have to pick out songs, because every song is memorable and great in their own ways, but if I have to, then I shall. "Kafir", great opening song. I love the lyrical content and they all out heavyness of the guitars. "4th Arra of Dagon": Epic. For clocking in at 8:40, it doesn't get boring at all. "Permitting the Noble Dead to Descend to the Underworld". Short, fast, catchy vocal phrasing, highly memorable song. "Iskander D'hul Karnon" This is probably my favourite. This is the more progressive song off the album I think. Again, catchy, great vocal phrasing and just overall, a well constructed and written song. I can't really think of comparing this to anyone. Nile are really in a league of their own within the death metal genre. It's technical, brutal, progressive and at some points, there is some groove in the album. Basically, if you like death metal, you cannot dislike Nile. It just wouldn't make sense. I say, go out, by the album. You'll be really interested to find that in the booklet, Karl Sanders explains the historical context of all the lyrics, and how they came to write the song lyrically and musically. With all seriousness, I truly believe that this is a special band that has released a special album. You cannot fully grasp a song until you listen to the whole album. Great songs, one after another. I have thus become speechless at describing this album. Listen to it.