The Most Ancient Ones
Imagine the following: you are standing on the stony coast of the sea as suddenly a monstrous wave of foul water is clutching at you. You are grabbing the the rock but the wave is returning again and again and again. While it is rolling remorselessly over you it releases foul bubbles of most hateful and dark voices. With this short description I tried to give you a little idea what Ukrainian HATE FOREST are about. The effect they create with their style of Black Metal is comparable to the one BOLT THROWER do with their Death Metal war machine. It is a kind of monstous, merciless and bulldozing grinder. With their compositions they close a gap in the Black Metal landscape and deliver at the same time their very own interpretation of the nordic style. The overall character of their songs is hymnic, yet mostly established in the midtempo range with some outbreaks into higher regions. Very original are the vocals which are somewhere in between Death and Black metal. I have not yet heard any other vocals I could directly compare with. The vocals used by HATE FOREST are dark and deep and because of that compareable to Death Metal vocals. But they are not grunted and far more aggressive than the usual Death Metal vocals. So possibly they could be described as an aggressive Black Metal version of the dark American Death Metal singing used by e.g. IMMOLATION or INCANTATION. Furtheron a shriekier type of Black Metal vocals join the abyssic ones every now and then. To come to the sound production: HATE FOREST have wraped up their compotitions in a frosty and shredding Black Metal sound that perfectly supports the bulldozing character of the songs. True, during the first listenings it is a little bit difficult to understand what the guitar section wants to express. But the more you listen to this album the more it reveals its charm and depths. It grows so to speak with every new listen. A short focus on the booklet: a black cover with just the monicker and the album title awaits you on the first sight. In the inner sleeve you won't find any lyrics. Instead every song is visualized gy breat looking and moody black and white photographs of forests and parts of it. But unfortunately there is one thing I do not want to conceal: on the first inner page you find the sentence "Aryan True Black Metal". On one hand this is in my opinion rather annoying. On the other hand, considering the fact that HATE FOREST are from Ukrania, it is rather ridiculous. As there is no other political hint or background apparent it is up to you if you ignore the sentence or just see it as provocation. Anyway, this is the only little thing I have to carp at. So apart from that a really outstanding and fresh release.