DARKEST HOUR - Hidden Hands Of A Sadist Nation

Darkest Hour - Hidden Hands Of A Sadist Nation

9 songs
56:02 minutes
***** *****


If you were one of the people who thought that Victory Records only release punk and hardcore albums, then it's time to change that opinion. Darkest Hour have always been more metal than punk in their musical approach, but for their new album Hidden Hands Of A Sadist Nation, they even made a pilgrimage to the forges of death metal (Göteborg, Sweden for the ignorant among you) and invited musicians from legendary bands like Soilwork, At The Gates, The Haunted and The Crown to deliver their most fierce album so far.

Of course I have written nice words about many well done death metal albums in the past, but what makes Darkest Hour stand apart is that they are lyrically firmly rooted in the more political hardcore scene. Where many American metal bands have an ill-tasting way of portraying their post-9/11 society, Darkest Hour have such a critical and intelligent approach that some American mainstream press started to really hate their new album. Because it can't be the music: seldom will you hear these days such a powerful symbiosis of death and thrash metal, with genre untypical and rather grind like vocals. The production is top-notch, and the songwriting is not only great, but couldn't be better. Songs like Pay Phones And Pills or the fierce-melodic Marching To The Killing Rhythm make you want to jump straight into the moshpit: fast rhythms, memorable melodies, killer groove, a hatred spitting vocalist... everything's perfect. Once you made it past the first eight songs with an average length of 5+ minutes, you are in for a treat with the 12-minutes instrumental epic Veritas, Aequitas where Darkest Hour show that they don't have to sound so angry all the time. And if you are to believe their interview with the serious Onion magazine, then it's anyway just about titties.

Hardcore death thrash won't come any better than this, which is why I have no choice but the maximum rating.

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