The Black Stream

Night In Gales

Any fan of death metal or melodic death metal needs to check this out, I can’t imagine how it would disappoint anyone.
November 21, 2023

For every DARK TRANQUILLITY, IN FLAMES, and SOILWORK out there, hundreds of other melodic death bands exist. A large portion of these bands are doing great work, some having long careers themselves. NIGHT IN GALES is a great case in point here. This German band has been providing delicious melodeath jams since 1995 when they released their EP ‘SYLPHLIKE.’ Flash forward to 2023, the band gifts us with their eighth full length album “The Black Stream” Nothing here will reinvent the wheel--it is business as usual for these German death marchers. And that is perfect for me because, honestly, innovation is overrated to a degree. I’m more concerned about solid song writing with memorable songs. “The Black Stream” is loaded to the gills with such elements and the whole listen is a smooth, satisfying experience that hits hard but still has a lot of melodic hooks to make the songs pop.

The album opens with “Tears of Blood” and immediately sets the tone for the album. The song is fast paced, heavy, but loaded with a lot of soaring melodies that are immediately pleasing and complimentary of the song as a whole. The production is clear and crisp but not overly—everything shines and the mix makes sure every instrument can be heard clearly. Between the more speed oriented segments, there are slower movements that fit right in and supply dynamics, such as the back half of the song and, more specially, the last forty five seconds or so. This is really how the whole album is—it ebbs and flows but always sounds focused and every song has something to catch the ears. “Transition to Doom” opens with deep growls before sliding into a wonderful melodic bridge that is atmospheric and epic. The vocal cadence is catchy and boosted in a big way with thick bass and drums—very beefy sounding song despite how melodic it is. The solo after the 2:40 mark is emotive and feels like a natural extension of the song and slides back into it with ease.

The title track sits at what is basically the halfway point of the album but even this far into it, there isn't any fatigue to be found. Each song refreshes the album by cementing its overall sound while setting up the next one to be launched. This track has a long intro of quiet, clean instrumentation, a call to the old days of the genre where bands would meld these elements into the fabric of the metal portions. This is one of my favorites on the album—this song has such a classic feel to it and the band really outdid themselves here. The album isn’t without its total ragers. Both “Return to Chaos” and “Carved Into Souls” are intense and riff based. They still, of course, include the band’s signature melodic style but they pummel and destroy while doing so.

The Surface” ends the album with a blast of high energy. The rhythm section is dense, an earthquake that rocks the foundations even as the guitars do their alternating back and forth between a grind of heavy guitars and catchy melodies/harmonies. All in all, this is another solid as hell album from one of the most consistent bands on the scene. Any fan of death metal or melodic death metal needs to check this out, I can’t imagine how it would disappoint anyone.

9 / 10

Almost Perfect








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"The Black Stream " Track-listing:
  1. Tears of Blood
  2. Gone Forever
  3. Transition to Doom
  4. Final Place
  5. Laughter of Madnesz
  6. The Black Stream
  7. The Consciousless
  8. Return to Chaos
  9. Carved into Souls
  10. The Eternal Fall
Night In Gales Lineup:

Tobias Bruchmann - Bass

Adriano Ricci - Drums

Frank Basten - Guitars

Jens Basten - Guitars, Lyrics, Songwriting

Christian Müller - Vocals

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