Night King / Inferno A Bold Blend Of Heavy And Power Metal

I’ll admit I took a punt on this album and I’m still not 100% sure if it succeeded or not. Ignore the Game Of Thrones references which made any Google research almost pointless and focus on the music in hand is the best option. But first, who is or are Night King.

Night King – Inferno (Nightking Records/Indigoboom)

Release Date: 26 April 2024

Words: Paul Hutchings

Well, the bio tells us that it’s the joint Northern forces from Denmark and Norway, in the shape of Thomas F. Økland (vocals) and Roar Bakke (guitar), both from local rock circuits. With three singles already released, those with an interest may already have a taste of the range of influences that permeate the songwriting here.

Night King - Inferno out 26 April 2024
Night King – Inferno out 26 April 2024

Following the drama of Overture, it is first single, Inferno, that kicks things off in grand style. A combination of classic Heavy Metal with touches of Power Metal thrown in, it’s a boisterous start and allows immediate acquaintance with Økland’s strong but possibly challenging vocal delivery. 

He’s certainly got the power, but I can see that some may struggle with it. Night King that follows is very much in the vein of Heaven & Hell, with Bakke’s riff and lead work reminiscent of a certain Mr Iommi at times. And that is a good thing, yes indeed. 

Dark and brooding, its slower pace adds heaviness to one of the strongest songs here.

It’s a relatively long album, with five songs well over six minutes in length among the total eleven on offer. There’s the obligatory ballad I Will Stand slap bang in the middle of the album, which is a bit of a droning chore, and one where the vocals aren’t at their best, although I will say that the guitar work remains top drawer.

Second single Magic Star is a short and punchy sing along track, or as the band say, as close to a sing along as you’ll get. It’s okay, a little routine and uninspiring, but contains a decent riff and had me nodding along.

With themes of magic and fantasy, mythical tales, and cinematic soundscapes, I can see what Night King are aiming for with Inferno. The drama of Nosferatu may have been covered by countless Metal bands in the past, but Night King churn out a belter here with a solid ’80s Metal track. 

Once again, the vocal delivery with some additional effects doesn’t always hit the right spot, but there isn’t anything to dislike here. The additional synths add a layer that substantially enhances the song.

Ambitious, yes, and as I’ve already said, at times there is a strain on Økland’s chords. But overall, Inferno works reasonably well. 

Whether you’ll be desperate to play it again once Crusader has finished is open to debate. I’ve spent a bit of time with it, and it did grow on me. But it won’t trouble the selection of my top 20 albums of 2024.

Sleeve Notes

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