Italy, Prosthetic Records, Technical/Brutal Death Metal
Regicide is like an expertly crafted single malt Scotch, in which case Hour of Penance would be an old-fashioned distillery. Similar to an expert producer of the fine elixir from the Islay or Highland region, Hour of Penance have only become more striking and memorable as their 15-year career progresses… unlike the majority of bands which fade to mediocrity. Six albums in and the ecclesiastical crushers keep getting more interesting and refined.
The four piece builds their recipe from a strong base of brutal death metal, which is topped with keynotes of atypical elements to add enhancing flavors. Specifically, on the nose, expect head-turning drumming of the highest level, especially memorable since this is the first album for newcomer James Payne and Sedition set the bar so high.
In the body, be ready for constantly evolving and twisting riffing, as in “Redeemer of Atrocity,” which has some of the most interesting guitar lines of 2014. In the aftertaste, Gregorian chants (“Sealed into Ecstasy”) and spacious, airy sections leave lingering mental images of a crumbling cathedral. Like a well balanced whisky, these various elements augment an already powerful flavor to create a palate filling and exquisitely crafted delicacy. Of death metal that is, not Scotch.
Continuing the progression of Sedition, Hour of Penance matures their unique flavor on Regicide. This is no blended copy, no product for consumption in shot glasses by the masses, but rather a bold product crafted for aficionados who recognize the full value of the subtle details of truly technical death metal.
Author: Witness to the Void