Chuck Schuldiner Project

Monday, February 3, 2014

Hellbent-Southern Brutality

I've only visited the Deep South a few times (Assuming you don't count Florida) and there is a certain vibe going on there, that land of Confederate flags, bizarro accents, and simple American pride. Hellbent seem to want to get right at this idea with their new record Southern Brutality. And, asides from a few weaker moments of clean vocals and wimpy riffs they succeed with aplomb. A group who have mastered the Lamb of God style of groove metal, this is death metal with a truly southern twist. Hellbent have a distinct sound and they seem hellbent on sharing it with the world!

One of the most impressive aspects of this record is the sheer quality of the riffs. Hellbent have a wonderful understanding of what it is to create passionate and destructive heavy music. Their is a raw power here that can only be found in the burned lands of Alabama. Another thing that I really dig about Southern Brutality is the vocals, this bands singer is quite clearly from the Randy Blythe school of singing. Their are some simply terrifying growls used here and they add a lot of flavor. Admittedly, as I mentioned before, the cleans take a lot away and the tracks that don't use them come across as the strongest. As a whole though they are not that invasive and don't deter you from a most excellent listening experience.

Southern Brutality captures the essence of the Deep South in under and hours worth of material. Hellbent have brought something exciting to the table that is reminiscent of Lamb of God and some thrash titans but still  fresh and exciting. Their unique blend of ideas establishes Hellbent as a band of heavy metal monsters ready to explode. If you want an album that will take you to those strange lands of Alabama, that will show you the magic of a people who often seem born to lose, well then Southern Brutality is for you. If you fear groove metal mastery and old school grit, then flee poser scum.

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