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Heruvim - Shadowheart Award winner

by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 26 October 2022, 3:11 PM

As Death Metal evolved from its seed sawn in the 80’s, the genre walked far away from the early form and gained a proper life (or, in other words, became far from its embryonic influences). Of course the name ‘Death Metal’ evokes and ample range of musical subgenres, but it’s common to depict bands that stay in the limits of classic Death Metal. But the Ukrainian quartet HERUVIN shows a different way on “Shadowheart”.

Their musical work is based on a classic model of Death Metal, but using a good technical appeal (where, sometimes, Thrash Metal touches and hooks can be heard), and some unusual features (as some subjective melodic touches, as can be heard on the song “Shadowheart”, and introspective parts as heard on “Oppression”). Their musical work is really something different from the common models and even with the difficulties that they have to deal with (being an independent band, and the war that is ravaging their country), the quartet presents something good, hooking and aggressive. It could be compared in some ways to the early works of AMORPHIS, IN FLAMES, EDGE OF SANITY and AT THE GATES, but with a particular approach.

The sonority is very good, indeed (and to think that they don’t a label to give them support is something astonishing), with everything sounding aggressive, defined and clean, what enables the fans to understand what they are expressing with their musical work without efforts. One can check that “Shadowheart” (a long song full of rhythmic shifts and a very good technical work, based on a very good work of the guitars with technical arrangements and hooks), “Oppression” (that bears a classic outfit, but with personal touches inherited from Thrash Metal, and what good work is shown on bass guitar and drums), “Empire Falls” (another long song full of shifts and arrangements, what keeps the attention of the listeners and evades the boring feeling; and what lovely arrangements and good grunts), and “Hyborian Age” (another very good set of tempos, but in a song with a simple Death Metal appeal, with many hooks and charming parts). As one can check, they prefer to use lyrical themes based on the work of Robert E. Howard, the creator of Conan, the Barbarian. Yes, the band has a great potential to explore in the future, so expect great things of HERUVIM. But why in the blazes “Shadowheart” isn’t a full album?

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

4 Star Rating

1. Shadowheart
2. Oppression
3. Empire Falls
4. Hyborian Age
Nefarious - Vocals, Guitars
Kick Flis - Guitars
Vyacheslav Babienko - Bass
Nick Skindrummer - Drums
Record Label: Redefining Darkness Records


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