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Hideous Divinity - Simulacrum Award winner

Hideous Divinity
Simulacrum
by Justin "Witty City' Wittenmeier at 01 December 2019, 4:15 AM

HIDEOUS DIVINITY is a Technical Brutal Death Metal band from Italy.  “Simulacrum,” is their fourth full length album and they also released a Demo album in 2007. I’m a late comer to this band—I didn’t discover them until 2017’s “Adveniens.”  It is obvious that HIDEOUS DIVINITY are a special band because of the way they approach their music and style.  The technical side of them consists of mind-bending riffs and tempo changes—surely these are the hallmarks of any Technical Death band.  However, these Italians use those traditional aspects to mold them to fit their needs, therefore creating a perfect beast that moves the genre forward while still respecting the past.  Much like “Adveniens,” their latest album “Simulacrum,” doesn’t choose flash over substance nor does it consists of songs that are all over the place.  Instead, these technical skills are a blueprint in which the band’s special brutality builds from.  Every twist, every turn, every passage that seethes from the album’s depth has a purpose: completely pulverize the listener and have them coming back for more.

Simulacrum,” is an album of astounding depth considering how unrelenting it is.  The smartly constructed songs can be taken at face value.  If you just want some fast and furious Death Metal with face ripping riffs, lighting fast drums, and insane vocals then you can have just that.   However, the  complex nature of the album is actually rather subtle—repeated listens will unveil an album drenched with atmosphere and emotion to reveal songs that expose something new each time.  The album is a constant rise that just keeps going—a perpetual climax that somehow manages to one up itself with every track. “Deleuzean Centuries,” is immediately a triumphant dedication to all things brutal.  Giulio’s drumming is particularly potent with his heavy bass drops and hard-hitting snare attack. Enrico’s deep growls work especially well with the relentless drum assault—when both get locked into a groove of inhuman speed, the result is Death Metal that rivals the aural fury of even the most intense veterans such as NILE and SUFFOCATION.   But this just comes back around to what I was saying about depth.  Just the song alone can be enjoyed and picked part just on the drums and vocals.  The guitars and bass add even more dimensions.  It would be a disservice to dismiss this track as just another rager—the rapid-fire riffs in the middle of the song that lead into that sweet, smartly placed guitar solo are just two examples of the various pieces that make up the song.

The shocking video of “The Embalmer,” caught the attention of everyone (and rightfully so) but don’t forget the video is a response to the music itself.  The craziness is the song, musical notes that twist together, break apart, and reform into a new animal that continues its mounting attack.  Much like the cover art would suggest, this album is in a constant state of rebirth, however painful it may present itself. Speaking of which, “The Deaden Room,” is one of the heaviest and intense Death Metal songs I’ve heard this year.  There is a lot of great things to say about this track but STEFANO’s bass is on fire, his fingers working like a magician.  Not only on this song but throughout the album, he drops the hammer to add such a heavy dimension to the proceedings but he also opens those dimensions up as well—he is a void from which there is no escape.

Bent Until Fracture,” is one of those painful transformations.  As the title might suggest, this song is a mounting tension of desperation.  As it goes through its four and a half minute run time, I couldn’t help but feel as if it was coming to a breaking point—and it does.  The last minute or so of the track is an exercise in totally unrelenting Death fucking Metal.  Schettino and Benedini are truly guitar masters. The last track, “Implemini Exitio,” is the most surprising—the speed is dialed back, at least for some portions of it.  Even with a different approach, the song still captures the feeling of the album—every piece coming together for the relentless march forward, dragging behind both new ideas and bodies along with it.

HIDEOUS DIVINITY has really crafted something special with this album.  For a band who has spent their career crossing each line as it comes to them, it really speaks to the testament and will of the band to come up with music that focuses on the essence of Death Metal while also showing us how the genre’s sometimes narrow sound can be expanded upon and dialed in for every detail.

Songwriting: 10
Musicianship: 10
Memorability: 10
Production: 10

5 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Deleuzean Centuries
2. The Embalmer
3. Condense
4. Anamorphia Atto III
5. The Deaden Room
6. Actaeon
7. Bent Until Fracture
8. Seed of Future Horror
9. Prey To A Vision
10. Implemini Exitio
Lineup:
Enrico “H.” Di Lorenzo – Vocals
Enrico Schettino – Guitars
Giulio Galati – Drums
Stefano Franceshini – Bass
Riccardo Benedini – Guitars
Record Label: Century Media
     


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