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Simple, groovy, and damn good. - 90%

enderrises, January 29th, 2008

This is metal boiled down to it's most basic and primeval substance. Right from the start it is an assault on your ears that is impossible to resist. The groove is well laid and not overdone, and the writing is inventive for the simplicity. It has it's issues, as all albums do, but overall I think this is an excellent piece of music. I'll go through the songs one by one, since that is the simplest way to review music in my experience.

First, we have Rehashed. The assault begins with a simple drum fill and that infectious groove is presented. The drums are simple enough, yet fit the song very well, and what else can be asked for drums? The guitars are excellent, if simple. It is obvious that the band isn't playing with such simplicity due to a lack of skill or laziness, but rather to create a simple, upfront and heavy album. The songwriting is effective, providing you with a beat that is varied and yet ever present. The vocals are simply mind-blowing. The power and skill that Bob Meadows uses in his voice is amazing. There are times where you can hear his voice almost breaking out of the scream, however, but the overall product is very striking.

Next is Needleman. An interesting opening, well written, and not as groovy as Rehashed. The intro dies down into simplicity yet again, and the vocals cut through... again, with that strained quality, yet obvious power. The chorus is melodic and infectious. This is not my favorite song on the album, but it is well done nevertheless. I personally would not have put it second on the album, but it is still a good song.

Then comes my favorite song on the album. The powerful ordered chaos of Vulture. This is the epitome of the album -- simple and groovy, yet well written and the vocals are amazing. The energy and power that the band makes here is not to be underestimated. They certainly make you "feel this uproar." Then the song calms down, and showcases the band's writing ability. This band has a talent for not letting simplicity limit them, and they show it here.

Pain & Panic. Dark, almost slamming, and strong. This song provides a groove that is almost danceable, but an atmosphere that is dark and almost frightening. This is definitely a song to mosh to. This is one of the few songs that is free from the vocal flaws that plague the other tracks, and is easily one of the best songs on the album. Add an excellent solo, and you have a great crossover metal/hardcore song.

Ah, the self titled track, Hunter. My least favorite song on the album. Vocal flaws are few and far between, but the song itself is slow and almost boring. It's still as well written as the other songs, but I just do not like slow metal songs. The atmosphere is more present here than any other song, which is a plus, and still makes the song enjoyable. The vocals are powerful and well done, and make the song.

Next we have Grotesque, another solid and groovy track. While it is present in the whole album, this song is a great example of laying the groove without playing the groove. The band understands that the drums set the beat and the rest of the song is on top of that, and this is a great example of that songwriting concept. It could have been faster, it could have been heavier, but it is still excellent.

Next is the instrumental filler track Salai. Not really much to talk about here. Well done, and haunting.

Next is A Rush And Siege. A slow intro leads into a brutal, heavy, groovy metal masterpiece. A few vocal flaws here and there, but an excellent track. The groove is varied and strong, and the vocals and chorus are infectious. An excellent breakdown leading to a good solo is a welcome change to the song.

I Give In. Not one of my favorite tracks. This track shows the ability of the band to play in odd time signatures, and that is well done. The chorus is powerful. However, the songwriting is not up to par with the rest of the album. The song feels like it needs a little more work done in the writing process.

Next is Ghosting. More varied time signatures, and better songwriting. The lyrics to this song are amazing, and the song itself is great. I feel like it's time I address one of the albums main failings. The songwriting on this album is well done, but too formulaic. It feels like the band stayed in the same few keys for the whole album. Almost every riff sounds like any other on the album. However, they manage to keep me interested in the album and keep it just varied enough so as not to be too repetitive.

With Pitiless Blows. Infectious groove. Great riff. The drums shine through in this song. And this fucking song is heavy. Very heavy. It's almost slamming. This song is written to be played live. The energy and power in this song make it one of the best songs on the album, and some may say the best. The breakdown is great, and when Bob Meadows screams “With pitiless blows” it feels like a call to arms and makes me want to start a fucking pit. What more can you ask from metal? This is a great end to the album, and wraps it up excellently.

So there you have it. Really, there are only two issues on this album, those being vocal flaws and mistakes that are few and far between and take very close attention to notice, and the almost formulaic riffs. However, the riffs, songwriting, vocals, the power and energy, and that damn groove combine to make an undeniably great album.