Take some ‘Very angry’, mix it with some ‘blistering hostility’ and sprinkle some ‘relentless brutality’ on the top. Bake for 30 blast beats and presto – you have The Human Hive!
Boris The Blade show us how modern death metal is done in Melbourne. Have the Aussies got something the rest of us are missing?
Angry. That was the first thought I had as soon as this started. ‘Serpents Crown’ opens the album up with rabid speed and aggression that only lets up to dive into down tempo filth. Boris The Blade want you to know they are pissed off, and they are going to tell you that by doing a number of things. Firstly, they’re going to shred your fucking face off. The fret boards on Josh Lording and Cameron Eyre’s guitars have probably seen more abuse than any Hollywood film star’s nose that you care to mention, not to mention Bassist Coby Chatz who does a stunning job of keeping up with them. This is technicality with intent to cause harm.
As one would expect, the percussion has to keep pace with such demonic riffery and it does just that, although this is where I found my first flaw. As with most music in this genre the drumming is incredibly technical and can be very hard to capture without losing some of its natural sound. The relentless nature of this kind of technical percussion leads to a programmed sound, title track ‘Human Hive’ serves as a good example. The production here doesn’t do drummer Karl Steller justice as it he is clearly fantastic behind a kit. I’d like to hear more of him rather then a quantized approximation that keeps everything tight but aurally a bit clinical.
Topping off the cacophony of filth is Vocalist Daniel Sharp. Displaying a respectable range that encompasses gut wrenching lows and the occasional tortured shriek, Sharp’s real strength is actually his mid range main vocal which oozes barely contained animosity. ‘Eternal Ruin’ does a smashing job of demonstrating Sharp’s range but also highlights that perhaps he should mix things up a bit more and not rely on that ferocious mid range as much.
I cannot honestly say that there’s not any boundaries being broken down here, there’s not much pioneering of sound in what these chaps have put together for this album, but that aside, its as well crafted within its genre as any I have heard. This album sits very comfortably upon the crest of the modern death metal/metalcore sound with such peers as fellow Australians Thy Art Is Murder and our very own UK based Black Tongue and Martyr Defiled.
Well crafted, despicable down tempo brutality with elements of technical insanity thrown in for good measure.
Boris The Blade are simply refining the existing template for metalcore/deathcore and injecting a healthy and most welcome dose of merciless violence!