If you are into guitar and djent plus you watch a lot of YouTube videos you may have already come across Canadian musician Nik Popovic a.k.a Nik Nocturnal. Nik has been blowing up on YouTube recently for his almost supernatural power of learning songs very quick and posting up cover versions of songs (usually within a few hours of a new song being released) from bands such as Veil Of Maya, Architects, Asking Alexandra and Polaris to name a few. Nik has recently released his own album “Undying Shadow” which he wrote, recorded and produced himself. We’ve been lucky enough to be given a copy to review so let’s dive right in.
The album starts off with the intro “Marrow” which sets you up for the first track “Hysteria” which is an instrumental masterpiece of low tuned guitars and syncopated patterns. Setting the tone for the album as Nik shows off his musical prowess with songs that capture the listeners attention with all out modern metal goodness combined with melody and bone shaking heaviness. Bringing the best influence from bands he covers for his channel plus his own style and flavor.
Next up is our favourite track on the album “Labyrinth” that features Dmitry Demyanenko from the band Shokran. This song slays with the force of a thousand armies, taking you through a musical journey of riffage so badass you’ll need to hang onto your seat for this one. Everything from the intro, breakdown and solos has been methodically thought and planned out then executed with near perfect precision. This is Nik at his absolute best with the added bonus of Dmitry laying down his mark too makes this a song definitely not to miss out on.
Nik has many features on this album including Andy Cizek (Makari), Baptiste Vigier (Betraying The Martyrs), Florestan Durand (Novelists), Andrew Ivashchenko (Shokran) and Ben English (Invent Animate). Each bringing their own flavours to give dynamics to the tracks they feature on and showing the respect they have for supporting an independent artist which is always great to see.
Whilst most the album is instrumental there is a few tracks with vocals on them. The song “Mire” being one of the best featuring Andrew Ivashchenko of Shokran. This song has a very Shokran feel too it which suits Andrews vocal style and really compliments the instrumentals. Building with each second and picking up pace before hitting the breakdown and spinning your works upside down.
Overall Nik has brought out a well-rounded album that has something to offer for fans of progressive djent music. We hope to hear a lot more from him in the future, so be sure to show your support by heading over to his YouTube channel and subscribing and checking out the full album “Undying Shadow” which is available now.
Definitely one for fans of all things heavy and low tuned