Dawnbringer – Nucleus

By Rob Kachluba

Profound Lore has another winner here in Nucleus. This label is constantly putting out quality, diverse acts such as Slough Feg, Apostle of Solitude, Stargazer and now you can add Dawnbringer’s Nucleus to the list. Main man Chris Black has had his mitts in numerous outfits since the mid-90s but on Nucleus he really has hit one out of the park. Scraping away every ounce of filler and trimming away all of the fat, Black has really created a lean, mean metal classic. What we have here is a deeply rooted organic record steeped in the tradition of the NWOBHM with thrashy-punky rhythms and a real feel for the dank underground. You get a real stripped down feel in what is going on in these songs. There are Maiden-like melodies and a Motorhead-inspired attitude running throughout. Fact is Chris has a bit of that old Lemmy spirit in him but with a little less gruff edge. I really do love what is going on with his voice; it is simple but effective. Tons of galloping melodies and riffs are littered throughout this album, most notably in opener “So Much For Sleep,” “Swing Hard” and my fave “Like An Earthquake” which just has a massive sounding chorus. What makes this album so special is that the songs fall into the traditional stylings of metal but aren’t afraid to explore outside the safe confines of the genre. I feel this band always had this kind of album in them and now have fully realized their potential in Nucleus: a glorious heavy metal album that should put a shit-eating grin on every metal head’s face.

(Profound Lore)

Rating: 8.5

Sean is the founder/publisher of Hellbound.ca; he has also written about metal for Exclaim!, Metal Maniacs, Roadburn, Unrestrained! and Vice.