For someone like Blake Judd, we would say that he has done all sorts of things, meaning that the American musician has taken a lot of trouble to fall off the radar of fans. In reality, Judd was only the latest victim of heroin addiction, a condition that makes every person capable of doing the worst things to satisfy their primary needs, which are none other than that of obtaining more drugs; the fact remains that, in the musical environment, those who cheat their colleagues or fans, regardless of the motivations behind it, end up being scorched earth around them, making any attempt to climb back up the ladder very difficult. But if a second chance is granted even to the most heinous criminals, why shouldn’t this also happen to Blake, who has already paid enough by touching with his own hands the deepest recesses into which one can sink in the course of one’s existence? The same question must have been asked by Prophecy Productions, the label that acquired the rights to the entire Nachtmystium catalogue and gave Judd the chance to start again doing what he does best in life, that is to say, being a musician. So, in addition to the reissue on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the release of Assassins: Black Meddle, Part I, the German label through the Lupus Lounge has placed on the market the ep Resilient, which represents the return on the scene of Judd with his band after all the vicissitudes already mentioned. Having said that, those who were expecting a new performance of oblique and psychedelic rock metal were fully satisfied: the three tracks plus intro on the basic edition of Resilient show that Judd still has a lot to say and that his particular style has not been lost. The title track is in fact a suffered song, structured on rather slow times and with a good melodic and atmospheric impact, while Silver Lanterns is a more classic mid tempo with plenty of variations on the theme, in which the usual good guitar work of Blake is highlighted. Really interesting, so as to make it in my opinion the best episode of the work despite its clear deviation from the other two tracks, is the long final track Desert Illumination, a real psychedelic trip that keeps faith with the title for the first half before turning into a driving ride of pure black metal. Among the musicians who accompany Judd in this successful attempt at musical rebirth is the German Martin van Valkenstijn, one who in addition to being involved in several bands in the black scene of his country, has also collaborated with heavy names such as Empyrium, Sun Of The Sleepless and The Vision Bleak, and from someone who gravitates in the area headed by a certain Markus Stock there is no doubt that could have come a valuable support for the revived Judd. All in all, Resilient proves to be a more than encouraging comeback, and obviously the possibility of listening to new music under the Nachtmystium label can only be good news for the many fans of this band.

2018 – Lupus Lounge