Hour Of Penance

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Release Date: 
Tuesday, May 13, 2014
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Rome-based act Hour Of Penance was formed more than fifteen years ago in the capital of Italy, Rome, and they recorded a first demo in 2000, which drew attention of Xtreem Music. On this label they released two full lengths, Disturbance (2003) and Pageantry For Martyrs (2005), followed by 2008’s The Vile Conception and 20101’s Paradigma, both via Unique Leader Records. After this, Hour Of Penance signed another two-album contract, this time with Prosthetic Records. A first result was Sedition, released in early Spring 2012 (review posted on July 8th 2012; see Archive), which surely was the band’s strongest and most impressive album to date. This did evolve into a huge international appreciation, also proven by their numerous gigs all over our globe, alongside notorious colleagues like The Black Dahlia Murder, Cannibal Corpse, Behemoth, Belphegor, Nile and many more.

Since each newly-made effort throughout this band’s history was better than the former one, I wondered if this would continue with Regicide, the sixth studio album by Hour Of Penance. Regicide has a total running time of forty minutes and as we could expect, these are forty nasty minutes of utter brutality and aggression. After a short but nice intro (Through The Triumphal March, a classic and epic piece of victorious soundtrack-alike bombast), the band brings their typifying trademark: modern and universal, fast and rhythmic, melodic and energetic Tech-Death with a monstrous, massive sound quality. It might be little less blasting than its predecessors, yet it is at least as intense and much more oppressive. Especially when it comes to the ‘melodic’ part of the game, there is quite some progression. It has nothing to do with increased heaviness; we know that melody can go well with unstoppable sonic brutality (cf. the USDM-scene, which is of major influence on the development of Hour Of Penance’s approach). There’s just more variety thanks to the increased use of technically well-written and executed melodic structures. It makes the whole sound more epic too than ever before. And I did mention the constant progression the band undergoes with each single release. Well, this proves that that evolution has not come to end yet. For sure Regicide is Hour Of Penance’s most mature and professional recording to date!