Hour Of Penance Shares Animated Video for “Flames Of Merciless Gods”, New Album Incoming

Italy’s Blackened Tech-Death legends Hour Of Penance posted the full animated video for their brand new single, ‘Flames Of Merciless Gods’, from their upcoming album Misotheism, due out on October 25th via Agonia Records. Pre-orders are also live at the link below in many merch configurations: Continue reading

Broken Hope – Mutilated and Assimilated

It’s becoming painfully aware that 2017 is a smashing year for Death Metal. We’ve had an embarrassment of riches in the form of stellar releases from Obituary, Hour of Penance and Suffocation and there’s more coming down the pike from the likes of Dying Fetus, Origin and (gasp) The Faceless. Not to be left out of this guttural gold rush, Chicago’s gore institution Broken Hope have thrown their hat in the ring with Mutilated and Assimilated (Century Media). Continue reading

Hour of Penance – Cast the First Stone

Italy’s own Hour Of Penance return with yet another scorcher of an album in Cast the First Stone (Prosthetic). In a quick but powerful thirty-five minutes, the brutal death metal foursome pack riff after riff into each of the nine tracks. Each track is built on top of riffs as to allow each track to stand out on its own without feeling random nor a mirror copy of the previous track. While this makes it difficult to decide which tracks to deconstruct, it serves as a plus for the overall feel of the album. Continue reading

Ghost Cult’s Most Anticipated Albums Of 2017

This past year was a huge one for music with so many bands releasing new material it was hard to keep up, even for us here at Ghost Cult. So many legacy bands, modern classic acts, and up and comers dropped new music this year, some may wish they had waited until 2017 to drop it like it’s hot. Without further ado, here are our picks for the new tunes you need in your life in 2017. Continue reading

Hour Of Penance Releases XXI Century Imperial Crusade From Cast The First Stone

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Hour Of Penance will be unleashing Cast The First Stone on January 27th, 2017 via Prosthetic Records. Continue reading

Hour Of Penance Announces New Album, Cast the First Stone For 2017

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Italian extreme metal masters Hour Of Penance have announced their new album, their seventh, in 2017. Cast the First Stone, will release via Prosthetic Records on January 27, 2017. Continue reading

Humangled – Prodromes of a Flatline

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While Italian death metal has never been able to get a word in edgeways when competing with its rivals from Sweden or the USA, the genre is in ruder health these days due to the international success of acts such as Fleshgod Apocalypse and Hour of Penance. This resurgence in fortunes has led to a few old hands reforming for another crack of the whip and Tuscan stalwarts Humangled are one of them. Prodromes of a Flatline (Bakerteam) is the group’s second effort since 2010’s Fractal (Abyss) turned a few heads. So is it enough to gain them a seat at the big boys table?

Unfortunately the answer is a definite no. While their strand of death metal certainly packs a punch, most noticeably on opening track ‘Liberté, Égalité, Brutalité’, there is not only too little going on throughout Prodromes of a Flatline to merit repeated spins, but crucially nothing to make the band stand out from the crowd. There’s not enough of the technicality of Nile, the brutality of Cryptopsy or the catchiness of Deicide, so we are left with a rather unappetising lumpen stew of the most bog standard elements of death metal, bereft of flavour and passion.

Too often it feels that the band is just going through the motions, often with some rather forced and clumsy transitions between parts that really should have been ironed out in the recording studio. At worst they come across as simply derivative as on the Death-aping ‘Intimacy Curse’ and God knows what possessed them to record such a horrible cover of ‘To Mega Therion’ and tack it on the end of the record. At best they’re a support band that tries hard for twenty-five minutes with the occasional half-catchy riff. However, in this day and age, it’s certainly not worth reforming for

 

5.0/10

 

JAMES CONWAY

Hour of Penance – Regicide

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Despite being somewhat outflanked in recent years by the operatic bombast of fellow countrymen Fleshgod Apocalypse, who they have previously shared members with, Italian quartet Hour of Penance obviously have no intention of being left behind in the race for the throne of Italian Death Metal as new album Regicide (Prosthetic) emphatically demonstrates, for it is one of the most brutal and vicious releases you are likely to hear all year.

 

Still mightily pissed off with the Catholic Church, which again provides most of the fuel for the hatred captured on these eleven tracks, Hour of Penance go for the throat from the off with the savage double-whammy of ‘Reforging the Crowns’ and ‘Desecrated Souls’ which fly by in a barrage of blastbeats, gargantuan Hate Eternal –influenced riffs and throaty bellows courtesy of the utterly furious sounding Paolo Pieri. There’s not much in the way of subtlety and you wonder briefly if the intensity will be sustained throughout. But these worries are soon assuaged by the quality of the songwriting that begin to shine through like light through a stain glass window as in the venomous chugging of ‘Spears of Sacred Dogma’ and the more nuanced menace of ‘Sealed Into Ecstasy.’

 

Although this is a strictly route-one death metal album, Hour of Penance are a well-oiled machine that despite having no original members remaining, have honed their craft to near perfection in recent years. Despite being unlikely to ever headline festival stages they just won’t stop delivering when it comes to gut-wrenchingly heavy and furious sounding compositions that are akin to being throttled by a possessed priest in the midst of a swarm of apocalyptic ruination. Regicide continues that trend and offers no hope of salvation.

 

7.5/10

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JAMES CONWAY