Nachzehrer: wicked good black metal from Boston

This week I decided to spend my local show dollars on a black metal show at The Sidebar Tavern, featuring Boston band Nachzehrer. I did not know too much about this band but had listened to them a bit after stumbling across a news item some weeks ago about the singer in the band being detained on a train platform because of his bullet belt. (Apparently there really are fashion police out there.)

Anyway, The Sidebar, which is now under new ownership, has been booking some great shows lately, perhaps in an effort (consciously or not) to fill the void left by the demise of another smallish venue the Talking Head Club. So naturally, if they are going to go to the trouble to book some black metal, I am going to go despite having to get up for work early the next morning.

The other bands that played deserve separate blog posts so I won’t go into much detail about them here. But I will mention that  the bill also included Wolfnuke (black metal from Hagerstown, Md.), At the Graves (ambient blackened doom from Baltimore), and Necropsy (Baltimore death thrash).

So back to Nachzehrer. According to the Wiki, a Nachzehrer is a vampire that devours its family and sometimes itself. We all have one of these in our family I am sure. The particular iteration of the band I saw had drums, guitar, bass and vocals, though their Facebook page lists an additional guitarist.

I am a lousy show reviewer, I must admit, mostly because I am more of less caught up in the moment and not taking notes or anything. But here’s my impression of this group.

Overall the songs are solid, semi-melodic traditional black metal. The drummer and bassist are completely in sync with one another, providing a solid head-banging foundation. Riding atop the bassline are some searing guitar melodies, threatening. The effect is punishing and raw, which is exactly how black metal should sound.  The songs mirror the structure of everything you would call “TRVE” black metal. Sometimes the tremolo guitar picking even reminded me of my beloved Tsjuder, minus the breakneck speed metal pace.

Nachzehrer’s vocals, unlike traditional black metal singing, are more in the grindcore style. Anytime a singer stands out in front of a band and is as physically active as Nachzehrer’s singer is, it reminds me of grindcore. That is not a bad thing, it just is what is it. Obviously if you were listening to the music on a CD or otherwise, this would not be an issue.

Unfortunately, the band did not have any CD or tapes available.  Many of their songs are uploaded on their Facebook page if you want to check them out. I did get a t-shirt.

Nachzehrer produced some brutal tunes and got the small audience revved up. I am glad they were able to stop by Baltimore on their mini-tour this week.  Hopefully, they will come back again and bring a full-length recording.

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