HATE&MERDA - La Capitale Del Male (2016)
The last time we heard from HATE&MERDA was with their L'Anno Dell'Odio debut album, which established the group's skills in the realm of harsh sludge. With this new album, that skilled way with the sludgy returns in strong form, rolled with environmental texturing and abrasive fuzz into a mean low-tuned machine. However, it also feels as though they've brought in more slow-paced sections this time around, which serves as an effective contrast for the parts in which they're slamming around and applying squeals of feedback.
And when they slam, they really slam. Pounding drums and slabs of bass, vocals reduced to grunts and screams by the intensity of the moments, and other signs of the musicians throwing themselves headlong into their performance fill the tracks, so that when it switches back to drawls of reverbed notes, electronic atmospherics, and slow-built melodic strains, you realize just how much control they're exerting. It's a sophomore album which shows significant growth, and a desire by the band to reach new heights in the mood and technique of their music.
This might be best shown in the 9-minute closing track, "Vai Via", which incorporates all of those elements from the previous tracks into a hard ride of unstable emotions and caustic sounds. Despite the softer bridges used semi-regularly through the album, "Vai Via" does a good job of sending listeners off with an acrid aftertaste to solidify the album in memory as one which pulls few punches. If you've been looking for some new sludge that doesn't stick to the basics and call it a day, be sure to check in on this LP.
For Fans Of; Grey Widow, Hypnochron, Legalize Crime, O.D.R.A., Uroboros