Norilsk – The Idea of North

Wednesday 29th, April 2015 / 19:16
By James Barager

norilskHypnotic Dirge Records

While there’s something to be said about a good riff, a good riff by itself with no follow through is something of a wasted opportunity. That’s what The Idea of North is. Solid riffs, good drumming, heavy vocals, just played for eternity. They’re the sonic equivalent of that attractive person who catches your eye, but open further inspection you realize they’re not all there.

This Quebecois death/doom duo’s debut lacks the ferocity and subtly of the genre’s best. Asphyx are the agonized screams from the other side of the torture chamber. Winter is the sound of frostbite. Mythic is a moonlit journey through a haunted cemetery. Norilsk is a spring thaw as you complain that it’s still minus five in April.

On paper, Norilsk shows a great deal of promise. The riffs are pretty cool, the solos are great, the vocals are strong. The ingredients are all there, but this cake came out half-baked.