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Conjuro Nuclear – Reacciones Paganas

Reacciones Paganas

Reacciones Paganas

Like so many others within our scene, it has always been an interest of mine to discover bands that reflect my diverse tastes, particularly when those bands seek to combine two or more diverging concepts of music to bridge two vaguely similar but ultimately distinct worlds. I have always been a fan of darkwave and black metal, so when I first read about the music of Conjuro Nuclear, I couldn’t help but feel that they would create music that is tailor-made for someone with my interests. Hailing from Barcelona, Spain, I have little doubt that I would have instantly connected with the people behind this project if our paths had crossed half my life ago when I lived in their country. It is unfortunate, then, that great ideas are not always executed well, as it was specifically the idea of their latest album, Reacciones Paganas, that greatly excited me.

It is hard to pinpoint just one or two things that the band could have changed to make this the album it should have been. To begin with, the production sounds like an attempt to emulate early raw black metal with a synth-led atmospheric bent. Unfortunately, all they really managed to do was create an unbalanced sound with an amateur keyboard performance that was allowed to be way too far up front in the mix. Everything else just seems to dissipate into a congealed mess in the background. The guitar in almost every song sounds as if it were taken from the same Sisters of Mercy riff, and while the keyboards are occasionally reminiscent of Type O Negative, they are performed in such a way that it sounds like a beginner with no concept of how to actually play the instrument, utilizing only the most basic of patterns in order to attempt to create an even modestly elaborate atmosphere, which if you haven’t guessed by now, they inevitably fail to do. Very little structure exists on Reacciones Paganas, leaving one with the impression that this work is meant to be seen as nothing more than demo material. That would be unfortunate because if this album could attract the right people, something could be done about the overall production quality in order to create a decent album. The vocals could be quite good if they stood out a bit more along with the guitar riffs in songs such as “Demonios Danzanetes,” which contains a solid punk riff/rhythm. Unfortunately, these few enjoyable moments are quickly ruined with the same lackadaisical problems that I’ve gone into detail about above.

As with many groups, it is the potential this band is capable of that is the most disappointing aspect of Reacciones Paganas. A band that simply has no chance of being interesting would not frustrate me as much, but the album is ruined by a poor excuse for a black metal aesthetic, horrid production, and the predictability that occurs upon hearing a song or two.  If the guitars were mixed a bit lower and simply had a different sound, allowing the heavier elements to come to the forefront, I would be writing quite a different review. A todos les llega su momento de Gloria, but not this one.

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Track List:

01) Luna Negra
02) Demonios Danzantes
03) Despojos de la Oscuridad
04) El Signo de la Salamandra
05) Los Ojos de los Brujos
06) Podridero de Almas
07) Sigilización (Trance) (☿)
08) Congregación Nocturna (☿)
09) Duerme en las estrellas (☿)
10) Lágrimas Químicas (☿)

Rating: 5/10
Written by: Patrick Bertlein
Label: Independent (Spain) / None / Digital, Tape
Black Metal / Darkwave / Shoegaze