Released: 2007, Wicked World
Reviewer: J. Campbell
"The depressing thing about tennis is that no matter how much I play, I'll never be as good as a wall. I played a wall once. They're relentless."
The late Mitch Hedberg never got a chance to hear the debut full-length from Nox, but I have a feeling that he’d describe it similarly. IXAXAAR is fucking relentless.
The Nox brand of death metal is insanely blast-heavy, and extremely pissed off. And when I say pissed, I mean PISSED. This is the kind of sinister DM that makes you jut out your chin, furrow your brow, and just fucking scowl at anyone and anything. Akin to a hyper-violent Immolation in their best moments, this band is a chaotic, jet-fueled steamroller that invokes unadulterated hatred. Did I mention they spew that hatred out fast?
Unfortunately, the nearly-grindcore level of speed that permeates this ugly tome actually drags the experience down a bit. Pummel, pummel, pummel, blast, blast, blast, kill, crush, destroy: This is the story of IXAXAAR. Which is all fine and good, except this album simply isn’t dynamic enough to keep itself fresh throughout. In fact, when this album finally ends, it’s actually it’s kind of relieving. Each note they play goes straight for the jugular, and avoiding stabs to the throat is an exhausting exercise. Placing a mid-tempo cruncher middle of the tracklist would’ve provided some needed respite for the long haul, but when Nox slows their riffage down to a jog, it’s just for seconds at a time. A whole song? Forget about it.
With all the wankery and posturing that permeates the death metal underground’s outer crust, it’s cool to see Wicked World standing behind a seething gang of Chorozonic bastards like Nox. If the band would ease up on the Napalm Death pills and let these ultra-evil compositions of theirs hang a little looser, we’d have some world class shit on our hands here. Until then…
“I played in a death-metal band. People either loved us or hated us. Or they thought we were OK.”