Hate Eternal - Phoenix Amongst the Ashes
Metal Blade
Death Metal
10 songs (41:06)
Release year: 2011
Hate Eternal, Metal Blade
Reviewed by Tony
Major event

When Derek Roddy left Hate Eternal many argued that the band could not survive without his blistering bass and incredible fill work. His blast beats would be missed. Others argued that drummers are replaceable bearing no human trademark such as a voice. Well, in this era of Metal extremity, it is absolutely clear that when a band has a drummer of Roddy’s caliber, he does indeed have an identity and a voice, and removing a superstar from your lineup can lead to disaster.

Derek Roddy is indeed that superstar. His style is unique even amongst blast beats, performing things that are unheard of and unseen by many in the Extreme Metal community. Despite his technical capability and incredible stick handling, Erik Rutan knows how to handle a guitar, and he has produced countless Death Metal albums including much of his own work. So why is what suffers most here the sound quality of the guitars and drums? Why are the strings so muddy? Forget the monotony of Rutan’s growl, everything here sounds like instruments played in a blender. It is not like each individual musician is not talented, but the vibe here whether I use my noise cancellers or play if over my shoddy computer speakers does not matter. It is all muddy and convoluted.

Much like their previous effort, the bass is far too high. It does not help that Alex Webster is not on Phoenix Amongst the Ashes. There is a big difference between the booming bass drum that somehow lets the guitars breathe on Vader’s Litany and the mountain of bass here that simply mutates the higher notes of the guitar and masks the finer points of the riffs. Jade Simonetto is definitely an excellent drummer in terms of speed and design, but nothing he does is overly inventive, and at top pace he simply cannot replicate the masterwork of Derek Roddy. This may be an unfair proclamation, like asking every shooting guard in the NBA to be Dwyane Wade, but it must be made because Derek Roddy was literally and figuratively the heartbeat of Hate Eternal. The Art of Redemption has a strange, strange beginning. With a shredding solo, blast beats, and bass but no riffs or vox. Having no rhythm guitar lends to an odd sound, especially with the guitars played in that high of a register. This solo goes on too long and then gives way to just another line of blast beats and monotone vocals.

Does anyone remember the interesting intro to I, Monarch ? Or the two-snare breakdown in The Victorious Reign? None of that is here. Just a massive throe of bass sound, decent solos, and about a thousand blast beats. The melodic solo on the Art of Redemption is good, but then goes straight back into blast beats.

In no way are blast beats a bad thing. They are the very essence of Death Metal, created by British Grindcore, set and perfected by Pete Sandoval, but overused and overextended by far too many Extreme Metal bands.

That, and Rutan’s incredibly monotone death growl make this album as noisome as it is boring. I would not go as far as saying it is as bad as Fury… but it is not good, and it is not worth the carpal tunnel I am developing by typing this week’s reviews. Two noisy, muddy, bleh Death Metal albums for you this week. I hope you enjoy reading about them as much as I hated writing about them.

Killing Songs :
Thorns of Acacia
Tony quoted 51 / 100
Other albums by Hate Eternal that we have reviewed:
Hate Eternal - The Fury and Flames reviewed by Dylan and quoted 48 / 100
Hate Eternal - I, Monarch reviewed by Aaron and quoted 85 / 100
Hate Eternal - King Of All Kings reviewed by Crims and quoted 80 / 100
4 readers voted
Your quote was: 87.
Change your vote

There are 7 replies to this review. Last one on Sat Jun 11, 2011 5:12 pm
View and Post comments