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Hecate – Ode Au Desert Suspendu

Ode Au Desert Suspendu
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 20 February 2020, 6:29 AM

Born in 2009, HECATE is a French Black Metal band from Tours (France), with a bunch of dark and epic influences from the metal scene and, more classical stuff. “Ode au Desert Suspendu” is the band’s third album, and contains eight tracks. “Fragment d’ehter” leads off the album, with hushed opening guitars and a solemn feeling. It picks up when the vile Black Metal vocals come in, and then a key change leads the way. The meter shifts suggest some expert musicianship here. “Oracle atone” is over eight minutes in length. Although the vocals are features prominently, the guitars provide much of the direction of the sound. When the drums go double time, the chaos picks up a bit. The song shifts several times along the way, really showcasing the talent they band has as a collective.

“Ou les marees poudroient” is a rousing and energetic number from the start. The guitars again maintain a strong presence along with the raging vocal wails. It takes a right turn just before the half-way mark, and a new riff charges ahead. It also takes an ambient pause just after the half-way mark, with doleful and solemn guitars leading the way. “Qu’une main strie la nuit” opens with some solemn clean guitars and a downtrodden and melancholy feeling. The vocals are gut-wrenching, as the slow pace really allows you to soak in all the despair. It picks up a bit after the half-way mark but remains a piece about utter desolation.

“Sous l’arche diamantine” opens with rolling drums and a wall of guitars, and with a darker, more menacing edge. It changes key at one point, but stays menacing throughout. “Pervigilium Mortis” opens with soft and soothing clean guitars that lead to distorted ones pretty quickly. The pace is hastened and then that wall of sound hits hard. The vocals are absolutely raging. It eventually settles into a groove, with the guitar melody leading the way. It finishes with a strong crescendo of lead guitars and then a clean guitar fade-out. “Et je penserai l’aube” leads the charge with thick guitars and a solemn but hopeful feeling that is quickly dashed when the vocals come into play. An alluring moment leads to a sorrowful ending. They really nail some nice emotions in this song.

“Ode au Desert Suspendu” closes the album; just over three minutes in length. It opens with some light simulated strings and begins to build an ominous sound. A lot of thought obviously went into this wondrous composition; it really caps an excellent album quite nicely. Overall, I love the chances they took on the album. It is still very much steeped in the traditions of the genre, especially considering the vocals, but branches out and explores a bit. I love that HECATE is not afraid of experimenting a bit. Each song has a distinct feeling, and their strong sense of composition comes though richly. Well done, mates!

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. Fragment d’ether
2. Oracle atone
3. Ou les marees poudroient
4. Qu’une main strie la nuit
5. Sous l’arche diamantine
6. Pervigilium Mortis
7. Et je penserai l’aube
8. Ode au Desert Suspendu
Veines Noires – Vocals
Nox.L – Guitar
F.V. – Guitar
Libra – Bass
Silence – Drums
Record Label: Mourning Light Records


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