Before talking about this album, I went fishing for what I wrote three years ago about Umbriel (Das Schweigen Zwischen Den Sternen), the last work published by Nocte Obducta before this Mogontiacum (Nachdem Die Nacht Herabgesunken). All in all, I think that, despite some time has passed, the concepts expressed on that occasion are still valid: the German band is now a reality of all respect, dedicated to a dark avant-garde music and experimental traits that can be cataloged in the field of metal especially for its past, net of some outbursts that, inserted into the current compositional structure, could even appear out of place. At the same time we can say, however, that the expressive freshness shown in the past years has gradually dispersed, making less a certain surprise effect and, consequently, really memorable moments. Nocte Obducta today are a band that provides an effective interpretation of the avant-garde in metal but, in doing so, has lost sight of the ultimate goal that must be the involvement of the listener, opting for a sound increasingly jagged and dispersive. In spite of this, the band from Mainz has always a recognizable stylistic trait and places, on an hour and more of music, at least half an hour of excellent level that corresponds to the very long Desihra Mogontiacum and to the conclusive Im Dunst Am Ewigen Grab Der Sonne (besides the two short instrumental tracks Lethe, Stein Und See – Teil I and II). These are the moments in which the sound seems to focus better on one or the other component or, at least, to make effective the coexistence of the different stylistic facets. Desihra Mogontiacum, in its long unwinding, shows the best qualities of Nocte Obducta, with the melody that softens the remaining black harshness, inserting itself in a context full of brilliant insights pervaded by the right degree of tension. The rest is not at all deplorable, it’s obviously performed in an impeccable way, but it gives the feeling of being much more studied than spontaneous, and the form often ends up drowning the substance, letting the sound flow in countless rivulets that take different directions, destined to never find a real meeting point. Then it’s clear that the competence and the experience of these great musicians makes Mogontiacum a very good work, that in my opinion is more addressed to those who prefer complex sounds regardless, rather than to those who look for immediate emotions.
2016 – MDD Records