Maahlas - Nightmare Years
This is the 2nd Norwegian band I’ve reviewed in the past couple of days. Maahlas are slightly different as one of the bands creators is from Turkey, so there is a very slight undercurrent of Eastern influences. The rest of the time, Maahlas are ripping the skin from your face with their ferocious onslaught.
You remember the 1st time you heard The Haunted? This is similar in its viciousness, but there’s also a softer side to Maahlas as they blend together many influences, from Black Metal, Thrash, Melodic Death and even more Progressive tendencies. The different genres are integrated very well, even when everything goes off on a tangent and noodling Prog sits very comfortably with more vehement stylistics. The only time it doesn’t work is when the vocals on An Ancestral Memory become too commercial and it gets a bit too Metalcore (or whatever genre it is) for my own personal tastes.
But that is just a very minor blip, on an otherwise excellent album.
At the moment there are only 2 official band members, vocalist Levent and guitarist Cuno, but thankfully they employed a real drummer for this album as a drum machine would have killed the natural aggression, as well as the flow of the varying styles.
These guys are definitely ones to watch because, with the right band members, they could become a very potent force in the next couple of years.