Independent Spotlight is a continuing series on Stewart’s blog. The series revolves around independent artists and bands sending their music to Brett to review. No band is promised a positive review, and all music is reviewed honestly in an effort to better independent music.
The last time Nic Nassuet was featured on here on the Independent Spotlight was April of 2015. At that time, I reviewed his album ‘Eleutherios,’ a splendidly excellent excursion through a very different approach to the genre of ‘singer songwriter.’ The artist describes his music with labels like ‘acoustic,’ ‘gothic,’ ‘folk,’ ‘horror,’ and ‘neofolk.’ Yes, a few of those are certainly out of place - at least on paper. In the studio, Nassuet breathes life into his creations with elegant tact. Let’s explore his latest single, ‘How The Gods Kill.’
‘How The Gods Kill’ is a licensed cover, the original credited to Danzig, an American heavy metal outfit. Nassuet, dubbed as the ‘King of Gothic Rock,’ put his spin on it for this release. Prior to digging into Nassuet’s, I went and I found the original to provide some basis for this review. Danzig’s original rendition is surprisingly soft - it’s a melancholy, melodic piece that centralizes around soft vocal crooning. (Definitely not what I expected from a heavy metal band.)
Characteristically, Nassuet has reimagined the track in his own unique way. Like the original, this cover of ‘How The Gods Kill’ is centered firmly around a soundscape of similar vocal crooning and atmospheric composition. Nassuet has brought a stunning string section into the picture, and it complements him in an absolutely haunting fashion. His soft acoustic guitar accents the aural intimacy of the song as well, concreting ‘How The Gods Kill’ as one of Nassuet’s most jaw-droppingly beautiful recordings.
The introspective nature of ‘How The Gods Kill’ suits Nassuet well. He carries the subject matter with an immense amount of prowess, and as waterfalls of his vocals bombard the listener, one is left feeling incredibly invested in the performance. It demands your attention with its genre-bending presence. Is this folk? Soft rock? Classical music? It’s a bit of it all, I think.
Nassuet’s new single is extraordinarily well performed and produced. Its passion is undeniable, and as a first release following ‘Eleutherios,’ it sets a very high bar for the next studio album. One can only hope that’s what Nassuet has in mind! Spin the track on Band Camp below and pick it up for $1.50.