Release DetailsLABEL Xtreem Music
RELEASED ON 3/15/2006
Rising From The Hidden Spheres
posted on 8/2006 By:
Of all the many different types of metal to choose from, honestly, death metal doesn’t generally top my list of interests. There’s a density to death metal I’ve never found to be abundantly appealing, so when something does catch my ear, it tends to be either technically insane, or more experimental. I picked Horrid’s Rising From The Hidden Spheres to review based on the brilliant method of, uh, picking something with cool cover art. Hey, it’s not fairly uncommon for that to happen around here, even if the results are really hit or miss. Someday we'll learn our lesson.
However, Horrid throw a few uncommon elements into their own particular kind of mid-paced, restrained death metal that prevents things from getting entirely predictable, and unfortunately, also not very exciting either. The vocals are extremely clear and understandable a large percentage of the time, and take a totally clean turn briefly during the 9 1/2-minute “Harmonic Devastation” a surprisingly polished, mature metal song that pushes extremity aside in favor of a nearly progressive songwriting aesthetic, for death metal that is. The guitars are much too thin for my liking, but after a few listens it becomes clear the gritty, grinding tones must be intentional when the sinewy nature of the material being played is taken into consideration. Even though this is only Horrid’s second full-length album since its inception in 1989, the characteristics of a veteran band are firmly in place.
The reserved vocal delivery is an effective tool in setting Horrid apart to some degree, as Robert’s mid-to-low range is more effective when it comes to enunciating the lyrics rather than just bludgeoning his way through with simple grunts and belches (even though he does that too quite a bit). “Come To Me”, and “Redemption And Lies” displays this articulation very well. The music doesn’t blast away too much at all, and falls closer to the speed of The Chasm, Jungle Rot, and Incantation. The classic Swedish elements they have been associated with are also firmly intact, along with a bit of rock on the aforementioned “Harmonic Devastation”. Ya’ gotta’ love the bass on this tune.
Closing “Outro” blends in with “Harmonic Devastation”, and is where the album takes a turn for the worse. The overall flow of the disc is sometimes a little difficult to follow to begin with since the material is a little drab and detached at times, with everything just sort of blending together and tumbling along without anything truly significant coming out of it. The outro is where things fizzle out and come to a very uneventful, ill-fittingly somber halt due to the misplaced, docile vibe of the tune, which then slips into minutes of near-silence until a lone voice emerges nonsensically to end the album. To put it gently, it’s a shitty way to end it, and like the dozens of bands who have also done it before, it takes away a lot of the power of disc’s conclusion. Ugh, just stop it already.
Rising From The Hidden Spheres could have used a little adrenaline here and there to keep things a little livelier, and the more reserved passages just don’t bring enough texture to keep the album flowing along with any sort of momentum behind it. It’s not really brooding as much as it is laid-back, and while the music isn’t lazily performed, it sounds a little bit colorless, but not in a minimalist sort of way. Vanilla is the word I’m looking for, possibly. Decent, but not really all that noteworthy.
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