Review by William Dibble of Panfocal Photography
Rising from the ashes of post-hardcore group, Greaver, Nodachi is a new entry into the NC progressive metal scene. Their first work released a short month ago, the album Beyond Death, Beyond Reason. While it only clocks in at fifteen minutes in length with five short tracks, it is certainly worth a close look. Nodachi follows in the footsteps of American Football, Youth League, and other progressive emo bands, and hails from Durham, NC.
The first track, “Jin-Kali, Prince of Psychology”, opens with soft, complicated, clean guitars. The drums cut in quickly. This complicated track features both heavy metal distortion and riffs, and soft, drifting melodies and cello work. It flows very naturally and beautifully, going straight into the heavier “Awakened, We Become the Blade.” Like the previous song, this one is also instrumental, but focuses on heavier guitar work, and drums as well. “Awakened” does soften towards more atmospheric sounds in places, but overall, retains the complex heaviness throughout, ending in a heavy breakdown.
“The Village of Echigoya” returns to the cleaner guitars and cellos of “Jin-Kali”. This track is soft and mellow throughout, sounding almost atmospheric. It would not be out of place in a movie soundtrack, to be completely honest. This just sets us up for the brutal progressive riffs of “Blood Covers the Earth, Autumn Begins.” Like “Awakened”, this is a heavier, but still very complicated and twisting, song. Mixing in the cello and clean guitars again, this one is the longest, and arguably most complex, song on the EP. It weaves from atmospheric pieces to blasting beats and riffs, with the cello singing hauntingly behind it all. It ends with a soft, droning track that carries us to the finale in “The Prince Falls, We Await the Next Harbinger.” This song, also very heavy, carries a very ominous feel with it. The omnipresent cello sounds baleful, as if it is about to attack the listener, and the song does, with a wash of heavy guitars and drums throughout several breakdowns.
Nodachi is a powerful entry into the melodic emo movement. If you are a person who enjoys powerful aural landscapes with no lyrics, it is definitely a musical project you should check out. The Nodachi blends Japanese cultural references, breakdowns, and cellos into one astounding project that is deserving of the time to listen to it.
Buy it here on Bandcamp!