without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
The Project Hate MCMXCIX are an unusual act, and there certainly isn't anyone else like them in the metal scene. Every album seems to deliver something different from the last, despite the features that they have in common with each other. And this particular release, In Hora Mortis Nostrae is quite possibly their best release and certainly my favourite of the albums I've heard so far.
I think one of the main reasons that I prefer this album to The Cadaverous Retaliation Agenda is that it's much less industrial-based. Of course there are still a number of different industrial elements, but the music isn't as cold and mechanical as it is on later releases. The bass is still present, but not to the extent that it was on the aforementioned The Cadaverous Retaliation Agenda. I praised the bass playing on that album heavily, but the slightly more subdued bass here works well for the band as the other elements are allowed to stand out as well. The guitars have more work to do, and they do it very well. The riffing is reasonably complex, but it never turns into pointless noodling and remains as powerful as you'd expect from an industrial death metal band. Sometimes the guitarists do switch to chugging, but I don't actually have a problem with it (which for me is quite rare) and it works well, adding rather than detracting from the intricate work that is In Hora Mortis Nostrae.
Another of the keys to making this enjoyable are the quieter sections that crop up frequently across the hour that this album runs for. The guitars and bass stop pummeling and the drums stop pounding, allowing the keyboardist to show exactly what they have to offer. Normally their work is accompanied by the exquisite vocals of Jonna Enckell, and together they create a delicate but very haunting melody to contrast with the generally harder verses delivered by the crunching guitars and Jörgen Sandström's punishing vocal lines. Despite their sometimes unexpected appearances, they're never a bad thing for the music, and most of the time they come just when something is needed to freshen up the music.
Speaking of Jonna Enckell, I think she's one of the best female singers I've heard. I liked Ruby Roque's voice a lot and praised her as being the best thing about The Cadaverous Retaliation Agenda, but there's something about Jonna's voice that really suits the band. She adds something that Ruby simply couldn't despite (or perhaps because of) the fact that her voice is far more delicate. She captures my attention more than the vast majority of singers with a similar style of voice, a number of whom fail to connect with me. Not so with Jonna, largely due to her fitting in with entirely with what she does. She's never made to sing where it's obvious that Jörgen should be growling, and TPH seem to know where to employ her skills to full effect. I'm glad that this is the case, because I feel that that Ruby's voice went partly to waste because she was out of place at times.
Having said all of these positives things about In Hora Mortis Nostrae, there are still some drawbacks. For one, the songs are bordering on the side of being too long. On an album full of four or five minute songs, maybe an eight minute epic to close the album wouldn't bother me. But when that eight minute epic is the shortest song on the album (with the longest at twelve minutes), everything drags on a bit more than I'd like. I find that it's less of a problem than on the band's other releases, but it still makes me need to check how long there is to go come the seventh minute of most tracks. Aside from that, there are still random periods where nothing happens in specific songs, most notably on 'The Innocence of the Three-Faced Saviour'. I genuinely thought the song was done around the six and a half minute mark and that it was going to play static for another six minutes, although thankfully that isn't the case. However, I really don't see why that period of ten or so seconds was at all necessary. It doesn't add anything at all, and I'd rather the music was allowed to flow from one section to the other without having random breaks halfway through a song.
Despite these very minor negatives about In Hora Mortis Nostrae, it does indeed merit an extremely high score and is deserving of the praise it has received thus far. For anyone that likes death metal, whether it be melodeath, tech death, industrial death, plain old-fashioned death metal or any kind, I'd recommend that you give this a spin. It's brilliantly and beautifully crafted and will most likely spend a lot of time being played on repeat.
Serious props to The Project Hate for this dark, blasphemous work of industrial death metal perfection. The clean, beautiful female vocals DO NOT detract at all from the sheer brutality that "In Hora Mortis Nostrae" achieves. If anything Jo's vocals add an extra layer of eeriness to this already monstrous mind-fuck of an album.
Imagine the weirdness of Sigh coupled with the industrial heaviness of Septic Flesh and add a massive dose of anti-Christian lyrics and merciless power-chord progressions in the vein of early-Deicide, and you might come close to getting a faint glimpse of what TPH achieves here.
Production-wise this sounds way ahead of its time in that it's got the raw grittiness of brutal death metal but TPH also manage to capture every single instrument in their individual glory: the rare alternate-picking guitar leads are absolutely devastating and the solos are a welcome addition to the layered sound. Music of this nature tends to become tedious and drown itself out, but TPH have created the most sincere and crushing industrial death metal album I've ever heard.
The Project Hate MCMXCIX is a band that plays Mid paced Death metal with a female vocalist and techno and industrial elements. The musicians in the band have created art on the album combining these parts tastefully and creating a unique brand of death metal. I found the band from going on God Among Insects' Myspace and seeing Lord K. Phillipson played in this band too. I then acquired In Hora Mortis Nostrae and was downright amazed by the music. There is an amount of brutality and technicality but this is balanced with good catchy riffs and songwriting creating incredible mid paced death metal.
The musicians are very tight. The low tuned guitar and bass meld with the drums; almost to the point of a groove. But in this case that's good. The tribal and techno beats serve for a break from metal drumming and create even more interesting songs. The guitarist churns out incredible riffs and solos that are technical and brutal but at the same time very catchy and memorable. The growls are incredible and the female vocals are very fitting of the music. There is a very,very,very small beef with it though: the bass could be a little more present in the mix. But that is hardly a flaw but being a bassist myself it would be nice for it to be more present in certain parts of the mix. The keyboards/samples are also add an interesting texture to the music.
The lyrics are penned very well. Almost poetically. The songs are written very well and have extremely consistent quality throughout the album. What are you waiting for? BUY THIS ALBUM.
Delivering their now perfectly crafted take on Swedish mid range death metal mixed with tribal techno beats and Anti-Christian ethereal female vocals, The Project Hate don’t veer from the sound of their previous albums, that’s to say the seven lengthy tracks are still essentially interchangeable with any of the other tracks from any of the other albums, but on In Hora Mortis, TPH seem to have really found the perfect mix and balance of their trademark elements that meld together far more seamlessly than prior efforts.
Whereas previous TPH tracks were simply a few minutes of down tuned, earthy Grave styled mid paced death metal, then a female fronted, techno beat section, then more death metal, In Hora Mortis is far more varied and slightly less formulaic. The tribal moments are ingrained and interwoven more into the character of the songs rather than a piecemeal midsection. Of particular note is female singer Jonna Enckell who replaced Mia Stahl on Hate, Dominate, Congregate, Eliminate, as she really comes into her own, with more of a lead vocal role, delivering some hypnotic, angelic yet spiteful lyrics--never has Anti-Christianity sounded so beautiful. Also, Lork K and his crew (now with a real drummer) seem to have added some surprising melody to the mix, making for the band’s first really ‘complete’ album.
In Hora Mortis is just chock full of huge, down tuned grooves and some truly spectacular moments of techno, death metal and female fronted goth artistry coming together into one epic display of Christ hating heft and grandeur. Of course, all the songs are rather long, with the shortest being eight minutes, but they are all far more memorable than anything the band has done in the past. Of particular note is the three minute mark of “Crawling Through the Infinite Fields of Carnage”, 2:20 mark of “For Our Name is Chaos Eternal”, the ominous grooves of “And Damnation is Forced Upon the Weak”, the slow foreboding burn of closer “The Innocence of the Three-Faced Savior” and standout “Tearing Down the Walls of Heaven,” with its crushing rumble, huge tribal drum injection, haunting melody and evocative, disturbing vocals where Enckell really shines.
Lord K and co have finally delivered the fully symbiotic, memorable album they have hinted at throughout their consistent career and this looks to be one of my personal favourite albums of 2007 !!!