Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Hour Of Penance - Sedition

Italy's Hour Of Penance is the unstoppable force in the death metal world. Despite some personal setbacks, they keep on churning out brutally technical death metal that puts most modern death metal stars like Behemoth and Nile to shame.

Sedition has all the trademarks and is in many ways the obvious sonic progression from Paradogma, which sported numerous exotic scales, ultra fast blasting, and the rhythmic vocal aggression Francesco Paoli is known for. After his falling out with the band, they hired frontman and guitarist Paolo Pieri to replace him - and to be quite honest he does a good job of aping Paoli's style, although he isn't quite as guttural. That's about the extent of the nuances you'll hear that set Sedition apart from its predecessor. Oh, and there's a bit more soloing too.

The frenetic yet brutal guitarwork these pasta-devouring monsters are known for comes back in a few memorable ways. The songwriting seem to coalesce around a main riff and lead that grows and evolves as the tracks progress, giving certain tracks a "grower" or build-up feel, like "Decimate The Ancestry Of The Only God" and "Sedition Through Scorn." Others feature more straightforward brutality like "Fall Of Servants" and the tremolo demonologies of "The Cannibal Gods." Both styles are welcome on here and give what would be a predictably stale brutal technical death metal album a bit of variety.

Hour Of Penance take it down a notch on the off occasion, switching from incessant and pummeling blasting to d-beats, often during solos. Perhaps one of the slower tracks on Sedition, "Ascension" is a pretty interesting track featuring potent triplets and a venomous lead spritzed with shouts during the refrain. The production featuring a competent low-end allows all tempos and solos to sound great.  My one complaint is that the bass guitar isn't as present in the mix as I would like it to be although it is audible and the frequencies are certainly present. Other than that this album is a colossal feat by Italy's premiere modern death metal band, propelling them past the heights that they soared to on Paradogma.

It's not as awesome or as absolutely balls-to-the-wall intense like The Vile Conception, but that's beside the point that this is a stellar fucking album.

8.25 out of 10


1. Transubstantiatio

2. Enlightened Submission

3. Decimate the Ancestry of the Only God

4. Fall of the Servants

5. Ascension

6. The Cannibal Gods

7. Sedition Through Scorn

8. Deprave to Redeem

9. Blind Obedience

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