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Night Gaunt : Night Gaunt (Reissue)

The 2015 rerelease of Night Gaunt's debut shows a lot of promise with its US/UK Trad styling.

With so many Doom bands being born in Italy, you could argue that Italian Doom has become a genre in itself. Not so with Night Gaunt, whose first offering was firmly rooted in the more Traditional UK/US style when it was released.

The opening 'Persecution' sets the bar high : heaviness and groove are the main strengths here, with your usual creepy darkness typical from the Italian bands. Riff-wise, we're stuck in the '80s with a sound close to both Celtic Frost (the rawness) and Candlemass (the epicness). All in all, this is a catchy album. The drums beat a tribal pattern that emphasize the horror vibe in tracks like 'Breathless' or 'The Church'. The murmuring vocals bring a sense of menace that makes a track like 'The Patient' a perfect Horror Doom creation.

The main problem here lies in the fact that, despite all its goodness, this is a completely unsurprising record. Now, the genre is old enough that you don't need every album to be a ground-breaking one that will suddenly starts a new wave, yet I wouldn't mind hearing a bit more personality (which, on a side-note, is exactly what I got on their next EP). This is a strong debut album, yet one in which you've heard every song a million times before. Still, it is done with genuine respect and a will to try to do it in the best possible way, instead of just being a mass of recycled riffs taken from better bands. This is an enjoyable record, and one in which Night Gaunt shows a lot of great promise.

Not all bands manage to do such a strong first record nowadays. And if nothing else, it gives us a strong anticipation for what Night Gaunt will release next. Because here there are clearly the seeds of better things to come.

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Reviewer's rating: 7.5/10


Tracklist :
1. Persecution
2. Breathless
3. The Church
4. Night Gaunt
5. The Patient
6. Black Velvet
7. Acquiescent Grave

Duration : Approx. 42 minutes

Visit the Night Gaunt bandpage.

Reviewed on 2017-10-22 by Laurent Lignon
Aesthetic Death
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