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Irae is another great solo project from the mind of Vulturius (Morte Incandescente). Hellnation is a barrage of fast and unrelenting Black Metal and somewhere in those extremely static and intense drums of the title track exists some sort of equilibrium. Although fantastically rough the song manages to deliver its fuming hatred like a kick in the head and I can help but to adore the combination of the screaming guitars, the guttural growling and the frenzied skin beating. Somewhere in this primitive and destructive chanting one can almost find peace and tranquillity. Axes of Decapitation keeps up the hectic and extremely caustic tempo of the album only to slow down a bit with the rather weirdly composed Lucifer’s Shadows that proves to be a brisk stroll compared to the previous songs. This shift in tempo is really not my thing in albums, especially not if it goes from drums the speed of machinegun fire to a gently autumnal rain. Sure it works in some albums but here it feels a bit misplaced and only serves to bring one down to the dull bleakness of reality after two songs of pure distilled rage. Cold Funeral Night is a great example of the variety of Irae and works as a great introduction to Under the Fog of a Cursed Forest, the best track on the album.
I really like slow and majestic songs and Under The Fog Of A Cursed Forest really manage to capture the essence of might and glory and keeps it burning in that dark place beneath the skin. The guitars and the lyrics whisper horrible secrets while the atmosphere really grows thick. Deathcampaign is another one of those slowly building songs that at first seams to be a quite dull walk in the woods only to evolve into a terrifying beast of legend swallowing your soul in one tiny bite. The drums are back in the frenzy of the first two songs and keep evolving the mood of the song. The album finishes strongly with Slaves of the One and Unholy Spirit, two songs of equal potency and might.
All in all Hellnation is a extremely potent album that only suffers from one tiny thing, the two first songs builds up a great intensity that gets dropped down into the abyss in one sweeping gesture with Lucifer’s Shadows. A more flowing transition would have made the jump far less terrible and could have propelled this album into beyond great. Irae impresses me with a cunning selection of both harsh and brutal Black Metal as well as more atmospheric tracks.
This is a great buy for anyone into Black Metal and I would recommend it to anyone interesting in some more raw and unrefined metal. Even if diamonds starts of as coal I find more use for the later in the forest.