Necromancing the Stone – Jewel Of the Vile

Romancing the Stone and Jewel of the Nile are two movies in which Danny Devito, Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner shined in the eighties. When a band comes up with this bandname, I immediately think that the music will not be very serious either. Man, was I wrong, perhaps the bandname is a little childish, the music isn’t. Looking at the line-up I see that some experienced artists take part. Jeramie King (The Absence), James Malone (Arsis), Ryan Williams (Black Dahlia Murder), John Williams and Justin Wood (both Brimstone Coven) form the band. If you conclude that, looking at their background, the umpteenth  melodic death metal album is going to be released, you are too premature.

The first tunes of the opening track reminds of early NWOBHM times. The singing of John Williams is clean, but  with a ceremonious a bit theatrical sound. “Bleed For the Night” is up next and besides the voice of John there are some grunts added by Wood and Malone. The guitar parts are excellent, twin solos, good riffs and splendid melodies. The variety of styles used in the songs is done great. A Mix of thrash, melodic death, (U.S.) power metal, speed metal, NWOBHM with a progressive touch.

Jeff Loomis and Taylor Nordberg play along on “Ritualistic Demise” and “The Old One” and both deliver. Due to the different styles used the music sounds rather original. I cannot think of a band lately that mixed different styles in such a way that almost something new is created. The original singing style of John also sees to it that it just sounds a bit different from the lot. Song after song, more bands enter my mind. Megadeth, Iced Earth, Omen, Death, Fates Warning, Candlemass, Queens of the Stone Age (just listen to “The Old One”) and Nevermore are just a few. In fact you can say that if you take eighties heavy metal as base, add breakdowns, heavy riffs, technical guitar solos, lots of speed, some sporadic grunts all put in great written melodic songs, you get Necromancing the Stone. If you want a more modern band name you can compare them with for a bit, it must be Charred Walls of the Damned, but believe me, Necromancing the Stone is a lot better…and original…

For me this is this months surprise and perhaps even an album for my year list.




01. Crusher
02. Bleed For the Night
03. The Descent
04. The Siren’s Call
05. Ritualistic Demise
06. The Old One
07. Rotted Reunion
08. Unfinished Business
09. Honor Thy Prophet
10. From Graves To Infamy
11. The Battle Of Morningstar


Playing time: 54:00

Release date: 5 August 2016

Label: Metal Blade


Reinier de Vries
About Reinier de Vries 383 Articles
Once a metal head, always a metalhead. My parents thought it would only be a period, but they were wrong. I quit to explain the beauty of metal music to others that are not into metal, because it is something you can't tell in words... It is like explaining to a teetotaller why a cold beer is so nice on a hot day... I started with bands like Accept, Metal Church, Iron Maiden and Metallica in the eighties and I think I will still listen to them when I'm stone deaf and old...

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