Itnuveth / Cult of Self Destruction – Black Viking Alliance / Nihil Verum Nisi Mors

A split is sometimes my best friend as it pulls double duty, sometimes more, in doing me the service of providing two different sounds from two different bands in one neat package, effectively giving me two different listening experiences. It’s been a hot minute since I’ve investigated one from the realm of black metal, so it was about time I found one to sink my teeth into. As if knowing I wanted a good time, the universe has presented me with yet even more Itnuveth material along with some fresh tunes from Cult of Self Destruction to make for a one-two punch of black metal that’s nothing to take lightly.

While Itnuveth came first with this split, I intentionally started off with Cult of Self Destruction because I wanted to kick off this split with material from an act I had never heard before, much less even heard of. And it’s with these five tracks that Cult of Self Destruction brought the most straight forward power for their split as it’s their contribution that provide us with a slightly more classic sound of black metal while not being afraid for even a moment to do some exploration to shake things up just a bit. “Nihil Verum Nisi Mors” even brought together some fairly progressive elements into the mix to make this half of the split an incredibly voracious copy that is immensely dark from beginning to end as Cult of Self Destruction take every opportunity they’re given to devastate and eviscerate. Where Itnuveth brings fantasy-based flavors, it’s “Nihil Verum Nisi Mors” that Cult of Self Destruction brought the very end of the world.

It always feels good to hear more Itnuveth because, in a way, it feels like a return to form for me as they’re an act that I can practically always rely on for quality material be it from a split like this, a humble EP, or one of the many full-lengths that they’ve already managed to pump out in the six years of their existence. Yet, it’s with their contribution of “Black Viking Alliance” that Itnuveth provides some of their most infectious material since “Enchantments”. As songs like “On the Edge of the Morning” and “Revenge” continuously ring in your head, it’s the go-for-blood attitude that this band always has mixed with their signature sound and folk elements that allow them to really stand out among the rest. There’s not much from these five tracks that we haven’t seen from Itnuveth before, but they refuse to let their sound stale and, thus, keep their sound spectacularly fresh and intoxicating through every release even as this split is but a drop in the barrel for a band like this.

Splits, more often than not, have bands that really compliment each other as they show off the bands’ individual strengths while simultaneously support the other acts by creating a cohesive listening experience. This example does not have that as much as I was initially thinking, but it’s but a small hurdle in the grand time that these ten tracks provide as both acts are immensely solid on their own in many respects. Be you a fan that’s new to either of these bands or veterans of either, there’s more than enough to satisfy on this split as it does nothing but bring greatness to the table.

LISTEN to previous Itnuveth material on Bandcamp here.

LIKE Itnuveth on Facebook here.

LISTEN to previous Cult of Self Destruction material on Bandcamp here.

LIKE Cult of Self Destruction on Facebook here.

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