Hell - Trilogy
Pesanta Urfolk
Blackened Doom/Drone
12 songs (02:24:04)
Release year: 0
Pesanta Urfolk
Reviewed by Neill

Hell is a Salem, OR blackened doom/drone band. A one man project, everything is done by a member simply going by "M.S.W". Trilogy is a compilation album of the three full-length, sold out Hell albums, titled Hell I, Hell II, and Hell III. The question is, does this release, and the albums it presents, deserve any praise, or is the band just one more band in an increasingly over crowded genre?

Each album will be represented here, and the first album showed a band, obviously, at their beginning, but already looking to make waves. The Drone elements are not yet too developed, and the songs are shorter than the otter two releases. The songs presented on Hell I show some of the spacy elements developed on the later releases, but are not fully realized. The production sounds fantastic, and the guitars are thick, heavily distorted and slow. The drumming feels a little weak though, and the bass adds that extra punch, but is not real special in any way. The vocals are mostly screamed/shouted in a black metal style, but they do venture into some deeper, and even heavily modified territory, making them seem really inhuman at times and a nice stand out in these style of music. For this album, and really this style, riffs play a big part in the band's sound, and the riffs are aplenty here. I would not say there is a single riff per se that really grabs you and gives you that "wow" feeling, but everything is played very well, and it does give you a good head banging groove you'd expect from a doom/stoner sound.

Hell II sees the band take some ideas they started on the first album and really progress this ideas. The songs become longer, but they also add much more. The long instrumental sections are the real highlight here as they have become more developed, and interesting, and even melodic at times. The band certainly added a bit of melody/calmness to their sound here. A song like Gog is a great example of this, which at over 20 minutes, really explores and shows what the band had in mind for their second release. Vocals on the song, and album as a whole are not as prominent, but when they do appear, they stay within the same style, and are still just as vicious as the prior album, but don't have the same inhuman sound to them anymore. They seem to be more "down to earth" in a way. The black metal influence even comes out a little more in a track like Metnal in a faster section with tremolo guitar picking, faster drums and an overall quicker pace. The big addition to this album is really just the band adding much more to their sound. The longer section of music, with some faster sections, acoustic sections, and even some electronic/droning sounding sections as well. It was big leap forward for the band from a song writing perspective, and really showed the band coming in to their own.

Finally, Hell III makes up the last two tracks on the record, and is somewhat hit or miss to me. There are only two tracks that make up the album, and the first one, Mourn is a fairly boring track to me. It did not grab me, or really show any kind of progression from the last album. Some of the drone elements were more pronounced and more spacy, but overall the song, as well as the next and last one, were just a continuation of Hell II. Despite the lack of interest in Mourn, the last track, Decedere is one of my favorite Hell tracks. Their longest song out of all three albums, again is a continuation from the prior album, but there is a much more emotional feeling provided. The music is mournful, and we get some female, clean operatic style singing on the track, which is a nice addition to the sound. The biggest thing this song offers is the feeling. Whereas all prior tracks have been heavy, and have had a great doom feeling, no other track really feels and passionate as this one. It is a fantastic way to end the record, and again, my favorite track from all three albums.

With 12 tracks, and nearly two and a half hours, there is a lot of material to get through. The band showed a great leap in song writing, and overall sound between the first and second record, and the third album had their best song, but each record does bring something good to the table, and is worth a listen. Some tracks do seem to be a bit too long, and the drawn out instrumental/droning sections could be cut down, but the songs do, for the most part, draw in the listener and take you on a great journey. Given that this is a compilation album, I cannot really do a score for it, however, I will say that these records should be checked out by everyone, and personally, my favorite overall album would be Hell II due to the expansion and progression in the sound from the prior album. I have linked to Hell II for listening here but feel free to check the other two albums on that site.

Killing Songs :
Gog, Decedere, Metnal, Brutus
Neill quoted no quote
Other albums by Hell that we have reviewed:
Hell - Curse and Chapter reviewed by Goat and quoted 80 / 100
Hell - Human Remains reviewed by Goat and quoted 90 / 100
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