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ROOT
ROOT
Hell Symphony
(I Hate Records)
59:01min

ROOT is a hallowed name in the Czech Republic scene, and for good reason. Each one of their albums is at least well appreciated, which speaks volumes to the band's songwriting abilities for ROOT have undergone significant changes over the years. "Hell Symphony", their second album, showcases none of these alterations as it is an early landmark in the band's history, but it is representative of what ROOT were doing in 1991: playing Black Metal. Black Metal, in ROOT'S case should be understood as Black Metal as in the case of MERCYFUL FATE. That is, no norsecore, no pagan vastlands, and no hyperfast tremolo picking. Eighties Black Metal. Instead, the listener is greeted with thumping drums, a throaty, funereal voice, and what can only be described as the glowing red light of Satan translated to the guitar. Appealing as it may sound, "Hell Symphony" can be hard to receive, as it is possessed of a character that seems to be unique to ROOT and only ROOT. Until very recently, early ROOT material was hard to come by, but though die hard collectors will forever weep bitterly over auction prices, regular Metal lovers may rejoice that the early albums are receiving long overdue represses. This I Hate Records version of "Hell Symphony" offers 3 additional live bonus tracks to the regular 12 album cuts: 'Lucifer' (Live in Brno, CZE - March 1999), 'Leviathan' (Live in Zwickau, GER - November 2000) and 'Song For Satan' (Live in Spalene Porici, CZE - July 2002). For all further info check out www.myspace.com/rootcze, www.myspace.com/ihate666

Nathan Shapiro

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