Blood & Poetry


Black Metal is as overpopulated a subgenre of metal as Metalcore and Groove Metal are […]
By Daniel R. Warnes
October 22, 2016
Hatespirit - Blood & Poetry album cover

Black Metal is as overpopulated a subgenre of metal as Metalcore and Groove Metal are these days. Everywhere you turn, there are corpsepaint covered nutters determined to prove that they are offering the best thing this side of NARGAROTH's "Herbstleyd" record. Fortunately, if you sift through enough of the blatant copycats, you can actually find a good number of bands that range in quality from decent to exceptional. As it happens; my favourite country to reference for savage and unhinged Black Metal is Finland. HATESPIRIT are pretty much a brand new prospect on the Black Metal scene and their debut release "Blood & Poetry" is a display of animalistic fury from the word go. There's no flashy technicality here, as a song like "Saalistajan Kuutamo" will make clear as day. Instead, this is a collection of unbridled shrieks, rabidly executed riffs and blastbeats that just refuse to quit. "The Wolfish Hunger" and "Silvery Howls" show the musical formula at work done in a somehow satisfying manner, all the while making it clear that HATESPIRIT have a real affinity for wolves.

There's something to be said for the fact that the band's two main musicians can also be traced to the band SERPENTFYRE. SERPENTFYRE have a much more steady-handed and level-headed approach to the genre; their 2015 "Bestial Mysticism" record showed a deal of class and that otherworldly ritualism to the songwriting. One could therefor suggest that HATESPIRIT is the vent through which Woewrb and Sevoragis choose to spew unrelenting bile and psychopathic aggression. Indeed; the songs on Blood & Poetry" are concise barrages of noise, seldom passing the four-minute mark in duration. One can appreciate the appeal in going absolutely insane with a guitar or screaming to the point that your throat bleeds but even among the barbaric surroundings of the Finnish Black Metal scene, it's safe to say that HATESPIRIT will not be a band for everyone. I would argue that even the most ardent Black Metal fan would have some trouble remaining patient enough to put up with this entire record, since it does become very repetitive before the end, which is where things are brought down to a haunting, ethereal crawl for the sombre and thought provoking "Song Of The Woods". By such a late point in the record, it feels a bit pointless to take the foot off the pedal.

The songs themselves have the familiar Black Metal tendency of seeming so unstructured that it becomes a structure of its own. The vocals are so overdriven that there's absolutely no chance of understanding if they're speaking English or Finnish at any given point. The production of the record is just what you would expect from such a nihilistic noise. As such, there is no polish whatsoever, which works just fine in this context. The real issue is one that is difficult to answer; will "Blood & Poetry" stick in people's minds enough to make the record worthy of repeated listens in the future? There's a charm to raw, undisciplined Black Metal that is represented well by HATESPIRIT. In fact, for anyone who hasn't ventured very far into the Black Metal world, I would recommend this record fairly well. Then again, I would maybe tell you to listen to something with more substance, such as BEHEXEN, SATANIC WARMASTER or HORNA instead.

5 / 10









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"Blood & Poetry" Track-listing:

1. Intro - Blood & Poetry
2. Saalistajan Kuutamo
3. Viha ja Vitutus
4. The Wolfish Hunger
5. In Dusky Depths
6. Silvery Howls
7. Thought And Memory
8. Talvitunnelmia
9. Breath of Night
10. The Ghost Lights

Hatespirit Lineup:

Woewrb - Drums
Sevoragis - Guitars, Bass
Kalmo - Vocals

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