Night Viper is something as rare these days as a full-fledged Heavy Metal quintet, complete with lyrical themes of freedom, revengeance and similar, easily-relateable topics. The band has existed for a grand total of three years now, with Exterminator marking their second full-length record, and fourth release overall, if we are counting their two Singles.
While I have not had the pleasure of giving their first album a spin, I will be judging Night Viper based upon this album alone – Just like anyone else who are unfamiliar with the band and happens to pick it up at their local musical dealer.
Overall, I must admit to finding the general direction and sound of the band to be quite pleasing: They seem to be in the spirit of both their chosen genre, as well as a product of their time, giving them a nice place among their contemporaries. And the fact that they have a female vocalist is a welcome addition as well, since this is not something that I have encountered often, given their chosen musical approach (probably due to my great love of eighties style Heavy Metal, which were often dominated by strong, powerful and loud male vocalists).
Despite having a female front figure, Night Viper has deferred from many of the usual approaches; Unlike Doro, for example, Night Viper does not focus on their acces to a higher vocal range, instead coming together to perform their own low, consistent and very catchy sound. It works very well and encapsulates the modern genre perfectly, yet sadly does very little to mark Night Viper as a band of any particular note. That is, until the track ”Lady Bad Luck” began playing.
While the track up until now had been decent and definitely worth listening to, when this song begins playing through my loudspeakers, I immediately noticed a significant increase in both tempo, vocal range and emotional commitment. For whatever the reason, at this point the ambitious Swedes show exactly what they are capable of – And they refuse to back down for the remainder of the record. And I must admit to being genuinely surprised and happy that Night Viper had decided to pull out all the stops: As well as a little annoyed about them not doing it prior to the latter third of Exterminator.
Of the ten tracks, there is no doubt about which one is my favourite – However, since it is unfortunately not on YouTube at the moment, I will instead link to the first track from their second full-length record, entitled ”No Escape”. Mind you, while it is still a good track, it is by no means a full testament of what this quintet is capable of; I will be keeping an eye on these in the future, as I would not be surprised to see them popping up more and more often.
Exterminator is a forty minute long modern Heavy Metal album that I would advise any fans of Tank to give a chance.