Hour Of Penance - Misotheism review



Reviewer:
8.0

49 users:
7.98
Band: Hour Of Penance
Album: Misotheism
Release date: October 2019


01. Mass Crucifixion Of Kings
02. Blight And Conquer
03. Fallen From Ivory Towers
04. The Second Babel
05. Lamb Of The Seven Sins
06. Flames Of Merciless Gods
07. Sovereign Nation
08. Dura Lex Sed Lex
09. Iudex
10. Occult Den Of Snakes


It's not too often a band streamlines their sound and, as a result, somehow comes across as innovative.

Followers of Italian death metal outfit Hour Of Penance will have no trouble pinpointing just what about their sound is so appealing: highly technical, crushing brutality. It's a formula literally thousands of bands have followed with varying degrees of success, but doing so in a way that engages an audience with an air of accessibility isn't quite as simple as some make it out to be. Looking back on our subject's earliest content is testament to that difficulty, just as every subsequent release since exemplifies that when properly executed, even the most extreme subset of death metal can reach across the dividing line and unite fans of all metal genres.

Misotheism, while the most focused and "simple" Hour Of Penance album dating back as far as their debut, may not bridge those aforementioned gaps with its less accessible writing, but it will be incredibly well received by purists and traditionalists for its undiluted approach. At least up until the final track, where some dissonant black metal-influenced riffing takes hold, forcing a re-listen for any initial outside intrusions that may have gone undetected, bringing about a realization that a seedy underbelly of blackened elements have formed like a small resistance cell protesting an occupying force. While not innumerable, it's a noted presence nevertheless -- a vocal minority of sorts.

Those foreign substances are nary enough to detract from the otherwise typical Hour Of Penance material. It's all fairly standard in terms of its delivery, though tightly performed and professionally molded as is to be expected by a band of this quality, held together by Davide Billia's excellent drumming. Moments are few and far between when the songwriting breaks for a buildup or regroups before the next onslaught, but those moments are almost immediately consumed by the overwhelming drum attack. Clearly familiar with his kit, "Brutal Dave"'s driving style helps propel some of those otherwise meandering riffs into full-blown assaults, acting as more of a buoy than an anchor for the rest of the band. Showcasing his own elite skill while triggering some catchy breakdown moments without a missed beat is an impressive ability reserved for the scene's most renowned percussionists -- a pedestal he may be soon joining with the added exposure of a band this popular.

Continuing with their trademark hypersonic pacing, Misotheism does offer a few moments of reprieve throughout, though only coming in the form of some melodic riffing, sporadic breakdowns, and intricate soloing before re-engaging at warp speed for the remainder of the album's 40-minute run time. Because of this, it can be a bit of a challenge to tell songs apart during a full play through, but individually nothing would hold any of these tracks back from appearing on a general death metal playlist. Hour Of Penance once again have unleashed upon the world a top-notch release, managing to change their style ever so slightly in a more basic sense without sacrificing any of the quality their name has since become synonymous with.


Rating breakdown
Performance: 10
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 5
Production: 10


 



Written on 16.11.2019 by Just another opinionated guy telling you what to listen to.


Comments

Comments: 2   Visited by: 57 users
16.11.2019 - 15:26
Coconut Racecar
I'm not sure how it happened, but this is my favorite album of theirs since The Vile Conception, because it reminds me of The Vile Conception. After that album, their sound started to change just enough to be unappealing for me. I like how this one is like a return to form? Even though they never changed all that much either?
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16.11.2019 - 17:35
Troy Killjoy
perfunctionist
Written by Coconut Racecar on 16.11.2019 at 15:26

I'm not sure how it happened, but this is my favorite album of theirs since The Vile Conception, because it reminds me of The Vile Conception. After that album, their sound started to change just enough to be unappealing for me. I like how this one is like a return to form? Even though they never changed all that much either?

Agreed. I think they slightly shifted away from the brutal side towards a more technical style after, like a 60-40 split, whereas with this they returned to the brutal side being 60 and technical side being 40.
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