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Nocturna “Of Sorcery And Darkness” Album Review by Luz Figueroa

Nocturna Band Members

With “Of Sorcery And Darkness,” Nocturna strides boldly into the symphonic metal arena, building on the dark, whimsical foundations laid by their debut album “Daughters of the Night.” Released through Scarlet Records, this album marks a continuation of the thematic and musical motifs that fans have come to expect, but with an added layer of maturity and refinement that suggests a band coming into its own.

Under the creative guidance of Federico Mondelli, Nocturna enhances their sound with lush, complex arrangements that intertwine the dual vocal strengths of Grace Darkling and Rehn Stillnight. These two vocalists elevate the album with their dynamic interplay; Darkling‘s operatic power contrasts beautifully against Stillnight‘s ethereal subtleties, creating a sonic dichotomy that is both enchanting and haunting.

The album kicks off with “Burn The Witch,” a track that immediately sets a high bar with its vigorous energy and soaring vocals, encapsulating the essence of power metal with a gothic twist. This is swiftly followed by tracks like “Sapphire” and “Noctis Avem,” which showcase the band’s ability to blend melodramatic flourishes with robust, catchy melodies, ensuring that the album captivates from start to finish.

Lyrically, “Of Sorcery And Darkness” delves deep into themes of duality—light versus dark, and the allure of forbidden knowledge. These motifs are explored through vivid storytelling, which, when combined with the album’s musical compositions, crafts an immersive listening experience. Songs like “Creatures of Darkness” and “Seven Sins” are not just auditory experiences but narrative arcs that draw listeners into Nocturna’s meticulously crafted world.

The production, handled adeptly by Andrea Fusini, is crisp and well-balanced, allowing each element from the thunderous drums to the intricate guitar work to shine without overwhelming the vocals. The clarity and depth of the soundstage on tracks like “Through The Maze” and the emotive ballad “The Last Day on Earth” highlight Fusini’s prowess and attention to detail, which is impeccable.

However, the album is not without its flaws. The uniformity in structure across the tracks might detract from the overall impact for some, as the constant high energy leaves little room for quieter, more introspective moments which could have provided much-needed dynamics and contrast to the prevailing intensity.

Of Sorcery And Darkness” is a robust follow-up that should satisfy fans of the genre and newcomers alike. It is a testament to Nocturna‘s growth as musicians and storytellers. The album dances elegantly between the theatrical and the sublime, with standout performances and commanding compositions that solidify Nocturna’s place in the metal world. While it occasionally succumbs to its relentless pace, the album ultimately succeeds in weaving a captivating spell that will leave listeners enthralled.

Luz’s Rating: 8.5/10

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Nocturna Album Covers

“Of Sorcery And Darkness” tracklist:

  1. Burn The Witch
  2. Sapphire
  3. Noctis Avem
  4. Creatures Of Darkness
  5. Midnight Sun
  6. First Disobedience
  7. Seven Sins
  8. Through The Maze
  9. Strangers
  10. Last Day On Earth

Nocturna:
Grace Darkling – vocals
Rehn Stillnight – vocals
Hedon – guitar
Antares – bass
Deimos – drums

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