In fact, not much is known about Martvl Nighty Ravenheart, a trio from Wölf near Eiterfeld (Germany) in Hessia, who have committed themselves to nothing more than a revolution in the metal scene with their debut album “Zool”. With a total of 8 tracks they go straight to the limit and don’t take any prisoners, at least as far as style is concerned. Head of the band “Martvl” (guitar, vocals) and his entourage “Hearturia” (bass, vocals) and “Hengse” (drums, vocals), present an astonishingly mature work for their first release.
“Way Of The Pharao” captivates from the first second with its progressive Black Metal and Core bonds, which change within seconds in a wild dance of sound. It is already clear why each of the protagonists on Zool are putting their vocals on it: This way, their spectrum ranges from the most aggressive growls to captivating clear vocals (with a feminine touch) and everything in between. The keyboard in the track was set as a clear contrast to the drum attack and seems almost atonal, leaving it as the quintessence.
“Transform Into The Light” throws the listener straight into a more melodic soundscape and reminds one of the early 2000’s, when the Gothenburg school catapulted itself into the more electronic realms – Fear Factory and Amorphis send their regards! Fantastic interplay of drums, synths and not to forget Martvul’s long and haunting growl, that impresses at the end. “Morbid Martvul Massacre” can be seen as the showpiece of the disc, although it is not the longest piece of “Zool”. The track combines all the strengths of MNRH and can be roughly divided into three parts. Almost jazz-like and improvised, the drums and guitar fit into one another before a sound wall with dark clear vocals sets an important accent for the work. Then suddenly the pace kicks a notch and beats its way through the rest, with growls, shouts, screams and skillful riffing – for the inexperienced ear it can certainly seem a bit confusing, as practically all guns are fired at the same time and distort each other a bit. A real treat for experienced ears!
The title track “Zool” uses various sound elements to create suspense at the beginning, which itself create an oppressive mood. Rustling, a weapon is reloaded, self-forgotten hums, in the distance a siren, slimy sputum and suddenly an animal growls the word “ZOOL”, after ecstatic violins, followed by a woman’s scream and the guitar kicks in and forms a soundscape of despair and sadness. The track is mainly in the low and mid tempo range and is carried towards the middle and towards the end by a growl and clear vocal duet as well as slow riffing. Just great! “Only The Birds Know” reminds me so much of Tiamat’s Wildhoney, that I get goosebumps. Decelerated, reconciling and withholding the most beautiful riff on the record for this special piece. In addition, Martvl’s chanting as bright as a bell, which becomes a bit more thoughtful towards the middle. A truly breathtaking finale and a good decision not to place the album’s ballad as a combo breaker in the middle of the album.
I attest this band a glorious future and I am very excited about the live capacities of Martvl Nighty Ravenheart. I hope we will hear a lot more and the band has already set the bar very high with their debut “Zool”.