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Label: MetalGate / Release Date: 21st February 2019
In Prague about five years ago five talented musicians decided to to put their heads together, pool their collective abilities as well as their shared love for Black Metal into one large cooking pot. After a few years of stewing said pot and refining their own unique formula and approach to such, it was finally brewed to perfection early last year – And finally, Metal Revolution managed to get our hands on it.
Hnus Umirajici is both the name of the band as well as the title of this, their first ever release. Hnus Umirajici (which, as far as Google Translate is telling me roughly means ‘The Abomination Dies’) is, in essence, the bands personal approach to Black Metal spread across seven tracks of roughly five minutes per song – Adding up to a grand total of just above thirty minutes, since the intro track is significantly shorter than the rest. But enough of the dry numbers – What would be considered the great selling points of Hnus Umirajici as both a band and as an album?
Straight off the bat it is very clear that the band has a long-standing love for the Second Wave Black Metal scene. All six tracks as well as the intro are heavily distorted, the drums are both consistent and methodic and the guitars and bass tracks accentuate eachother perfectly – The lead vocalist even goes by the moniker ‘Satan’ in order to further drive the point home.
Where their approach diverges from the Norwegian model made somewhat popular nearly thirty years ago is in their pacing, where it would seem that they have looked sideways at the conventional recipe for many Doom Metal acts.
”Maruska”, the first single released from Hnus Umirajici for instance, is the fastest track present on the album, yet is still considerably slower than most contemporary Black Metal releases. In this case, however, I would argue that it is benefitial to the album as a whole. It allows the before-mentioned Satan to articulate more and put more menace into his vocals while the rest of the musicians builds atmosphere up around him to great effect. Granted, I have a penchant for Doom Metal as well, but normally I am not a fan of mixing genres (I am quite rigid that way). In the case of this Czech quintet however, they have managed to do so not only succesfully, at the same time created a rather impressive first release. As a matter of fact, the only thing I find myself disliking about it, is the lenght – Perhaps a bit short at around thirty minutes, when considering that the root of the genre being displayed is Black Metal.
That being said, however, it is well worth a listen, even if you, like me, do not understand a word of Czech. And if you ever see a poster about this band performing somewhere in Europe, feel free to let me know – And with a little luck, I will see you there.