Rating:
8.2
Shattered Hope - Promo 2007 [Demo]
December 2007


01. Shadows From The Past
02. Enlighten The Darkness


Shattered Hope's 2007 promo, aptly named "Promo 2007" is two tracks and nearly 20 minutes of doomy goodness.

Hailing from Athens, Greece, the band is currently unsigned and only had put out a demo, 2005's "A View of Grief" prior to cutting this promo. I cite this information only because it makes the promo that much more impressive a release. The 2007 Promo hardly sounds like the work of an unsigned band putting together a tape to get heard - it's damned good and sounds more like an interim EP released by seasoned vets with multiple albums under their belt.

Shattered Hope consists of six musicians, all of whom understand how their respective instruments contribute within the doom context. Even more than that, they certainly have a great grasp of dynamics - that which makes their music both interesting and enthralling.

Thanos and Sakis on guitar, Thanasis on bass provide solid riffing, a core component of doom metal, and have several riffs and tempos in each track, coupled with Eygenia on keyboards to help provide atmosphere. On both tracks, during the guitar-driven portions, the keyboard helps to accent the riffs, and later takes over the quieter, atmospheric parts where the guitars drop out to let the keyboard breath. After the interludes, the guitars thunder back into the action, picking up the pace. Solos are slower and melodic in approach. There is no flash (hey, this is doom, where you expecting sweep picking and two hand tapping runs?), the solos instead further the emotional atmosphere - and at times in the waning moments of "Enlighten the Darkness" showcase a knack for almost bluesy bends and a fantastic tone.

Drummer George occupies the kit, moving the tracks along but finds sufficient time within the slow paced doom to add a few fills to keep it interesting. Nikos manages to mix up the vocal delivery nicely. Most of the release features Death/Doom style vocals that reminded me, on first listen of "Shadows of the Past", of Pim from Officium Triste, but Nikos also has a nice melodic voice that is also showcased at times, as well as some spoken passages.

The songs themselves both clock in over the eight minute mark, and both demonstrate their aforementioned understanding of dynamics. Songs evolve from slower chugged doom riffs to slower, quiet acoustic interludes with melodic vocals, back to more slow doom or even crushing uptempo riffs. Rather than come up with a cool riff or two and just rest on that for five minutes or more, and boring the listener to tears, they shift things up... suffocating the listener one minute, releasing tension the next, only to resume crushing away. The shifts in mood within the songs not only keeps them from growing stale, they keep your interest piqued.

Per Thanos, the group has set about in recording their first full length. If this promo is a good indication at what they are capable of, I'll be making a point to acquire their new release the moment it's hot off the press.

If you are into Mar de Grises or similar doom, Shattered Hope is definitely worth your time and effort to check out. While this promo might not be readily available, you can download "A View of Grief" (reviewed here by Rozz) from the band's website, http://www.shatteredhope.gr/.

Performance: 8
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 8
Production: 8


Band profile: Shattered Hope
Album: Promo 2007


 



Written on 03.04.2009 by
BitterCOld
BitterCOld has been officially reviewing albums for MetalStorm since 2009.
More reviews by BitterCOld ››



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Marcel Hubregtse - 03.04.2009 at 14:27  
Interesting, must check it out.

Btw, my doom grapevine told me that Thanos will be working together with Geert (bass of Faal) and Nils (drums of Ophis) on a doom project soon.
Marcel Hubregtse - 12.04.2009 at 23:52  
Really nice promising stuff here. The song remain interesting for their duration and flow really well. What they gotta try and do now is get bit more a soound of their own to discern them from the masses of doom death bands populating the earth.
BitterCOld - 02.06.2010 at 22:13  
In retrospect my newness to doom is showing in the comparison phase... Officium Triste would likely be a better point of reference. in any case, still enjoyable.
Marcel Hubregtse - 02.06.2010 at 22:22  
Written by BitterCOld on 02.06.2010 at 22:13

In retrospect my newness to doom is showing in the comparison phase... Officium Triste would likely be a better point of reference. in any case, still enjoyable.


Well don't be too harsh on yourself... You did compare the vocals to those of OT's Pim.

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