Rebel Wizard - Triumph of Gloom - (8/10)
Published on February 3, 2017
Triumph of Gloom is the first full length from the Australian blackened heavy metal project Rebel Wizard. Self-described as the harbinger of negative wizard metal, Rebel Wizard is the labor of seething hatred from the crazed mastermind behind Nekrasov. If you’ve followed the band through the rash of EP’s released in 2015, then Triumph of Gloom will not offer much in the way of surprises, but it does bring a barrel full of riffs and one of the most negative and nihilistic attitudes in heavy metal.
The music washes over in a grand presentation of thrashing, fist pumping riffing and double kick rhythms, yet many of the songs often switch into traditionally inspired runs with harmonized leads. Everything is led by NKSV’s slathering, venomous snarl, which I can only imagine is spouting the most negative subjects known to man. The vocals are a little low in the mix, but it allows the focus to remain on the riffing, which is certainly this project’s biggest selling point. Basically it sounds like rabid blackened thrashing thrown into a blender with NWOBHM sensibility. Regardless, it’s a high octane album, with little in the way of downtime, with only a few interludes and spoken word segments pausing the assault.
Triumph of Gloom is certainly not a pristine and crystalline offering, yet it’s not meant to be. It’s chock full of thrashing riffs with a penchant for traditional heavy metal styling, presented with a snarling maniac as your narrator. It may be a little too heavy/thrash based for the die hard black metal fans and a little too raw and rapacious for the typical traditional metal listener, but for the discerning listener Rebel Wizard offers plenty to dig into. Triumph of Gloom should certainly bring more attention to this act, and rightfully so, as negative wizard metal is just as cool as it sounds.