1.Envision The Beast
2.Rape The Children Of Abel
4.Night Visit
6.Night Of The Stygian Souls
7.Fuel The Flames
8.The Truth Unveiled
9.The Arctic Mirage (Bonus) instrumental
10.Out In The Haunted Woods (Bonus) instrumental




Aphazel – lead vocals, acoustic - rhythm & lead Guitars,  keyboards
Grom – drums and percussion, backing vocals
Dhilorz – bass, acoustic - rhythm & lead guitars, backing vocals
Jesus Christ – rhythm and lead guitars, backing vocals


guest and session musicians

Lord Kaiaphas - Guest Lead Vocals on  Rape The Children Of Abel

Andrea Trapasso - Session keyboards

Alex Azzali - Additional Guitars on Night of the stygian Souls

Moonbeam (Iblis) - Violin on Envision the Beast and Night of the Stygian Souls

Neviah Luneville - Female vocals on Envision the Beast

Omega - Female Vocals on Out in the hounted Woods


ANCIENT: "Night Visit"                   ancient                         metal blade


recorded by Andrea Trapasso and Alex Azzali at Mirage Studios (Inverigo - Italy)

produced by Ancient and Alex Azzali

mixed by Fredrick Nordström at Fredman Studios (Göteborg - Sweden), assistant Henrik Udd

mastered at Alpha Omega Studios by Alex Azzali

cover artwork by Fabio Timpanaro - Neon Trinity Kill Studios


review by dalia "gryphon_spirit" di giacomo____   


CLICK TO ENLARGEWhen the incomparable canonic heritage from  Norway meets the subtle, very dark yet lively occult Italian spirit there is  nothing  that couldn't be reached in Black Metal. And this formula is not really so widespread. Therefore Ancient are the right group of artists that can handle with  Old School but without appearing old-fashioned, indeed they  insert new elements full of temperament  and deep ancestral darkness, whose roots don't go back to Norway only. And when the Nordic feelings and care and precision meet that precision and enthusiasm and obscure fascination  that Italian too are able to radiate (when they want) , the result is soaked with incredible qualities and good points. Ancient as Ferrari of Black Metal  propose the follow up to the already remarkable Proxima Centauri, getting indisputably once and for all a place of honour in the recent powerful and exciting productions of Black Metal 2003/2004 . Night Visit is a super album from a band that the true connoisseurs of Black have always appreciated. In fall 2002 when i wanted to see them live in Sursee,  attracted by the well conceived Proxima Centauri, i was more than rewarded cause i attended a very interesting concert in which i noticed  the good balanced stage acting, the enthusiasm and the genuineness of all members that  believe in what they do.  In Night Visit i find again these features: i find genuineness, precision, enthusiasm, dark and obscure credibility, respect of the canons of old , but also  much up-to -dated contents. Ancient move with the times, remaining timeless. 

Night Visit shows an exact drumming, full of power and actually propelling, somehow blasting and well dynamic like in southern attitude . Night Visit shows also elements of  Heavy metal and Death and Gothic .  The symphonic approach is only a light allusion,  keys are there to increase the atmospheric timbre, but it's guitars and  bass  that remain the driving metal force (together with drums of course) . Moonbeam's violin is very intense ,  female vocals are occasionally present though i wouldn't find necessary to insert them at all.(Deadly Kristin is now abroad and couldn't assure her participation to recording and live appearances). Aphazel 's evil screams  are biting,  malevolent  , powerful, creepy. Somehow they have the same fascination that was typical of Immortal. Interesting to notice is that all members of the band are involved in the composition: we have tracks signed by the cool trio Aphazel - Dhilorz - GroM, that are the darker , the gloomier ones, and tracks composed by Jesus Christ , which are the rock n' roll based Horroble and Licanthropy , this latest one enriched with enthralling  loops and a catchiness that could make of it even a club track but without any compromise.  I find in Night Visit a formidable sound too: the instruments are mixed nevertheless well recognizable: each one as defined entity. And when  Fredrick Nordström asks amazed to the band where the album was recorded, well ... the  recording  in question must be a bit of sensational. Night Visit was recorded at the Mirage studios in Inverigo (Italy), which are  pop studios equipped better than  an average metal studio. Alex Azzali, who is Ancient's  live phonic technician has  intensified all the abilities of the musicians, enhancing the timbres , leading them to potency of heaviness. To record in a pop studio with a metal producer,  to mix everything then at the  legendary Fredman Studios and to master at the Alpha Omega Studios, was a very good idea: all this  made of Night Visit a true sonic  delight. No traces of those "electro-industrial" alchemies acted by super producers that pump up  weak bands. In Night Visit there is "only" a kind of three dimensional sonic relief: a contrast between music attacks and emptiness. Every detail  well highlighted. The impression received is realism: the listener is  there  together with the band . You are there with them in the middle of nowhere, in the middle of another dimension. You are  there in the middle of the fire evoked by  the relevant tremendous opener Envision the Beast  where the rhythmic section is a weapon shooting  blasty apocalyptic, very heavy fast riffs. Tempo changes are round and optimal, the   gothic-like intermezzo where the violin of Moonbean underlines the emotionality is spectacular also because  comes to us totally unforeseen. 

 You can find yourself in the middle of frozen horizons of  the instrumental bonus track The arctic Mirage. Or you can fully taste  the cadenced Immortal /old Dimmu Borgir -oriented The Night of Stygian Souls. Or you are in the middle of the limpid nostalgic metropolitan sadness of The Truth unveiled which bursts out into a an aggressive Death/Black. Or you will be poisoned by Rape the Children of Abel (with Lord Kaiaphas as guest ) or overwhelmed by the killer Fuel the Flames. Do you want to receive a night visit?

rating: 9.4/10


dalia di giacomo    
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