Distributor/label URL: http://www.unspeakableaxerecords.com
Band Album [URL]: https://unspeakableaxerecords.bandcamp.com/album/the-spectre-of-lonely-souls
Band Wesbsite: https://www.facebook.com/Hellishchile/
Necromancer – Vocal & Bass
Cristian León – Drums
Francisco Sanhueza – Guitar
Javier Salgado – Guitar
2. The Night
3. The Screams Come From Inside
4. The Curse Upon Us
5. Souls Of Desolation
6. Only Death
7. The Walker Of Shadows
9. Bloody Tales
Hellish are a band from Santiago, Chile who formed in the 2010s. They previously impressed fans worldwide with their debut ‘Grimoure’, on the label Unspeakable Axe Records. With the same record company, they will release ‘The Spectre of Lonely Souls’ on July 27th and it outpaces and out-riffs even what came before it.
The album starts off with a morbid, sophisticated piano solo which conjures up an unsettling mood. However, it’s arguably a bit of a strange track to have on the album, as it’s a one off in terms of style both instrumentally and harmonically, and it sets up expectations that are never met. Sure the following material is dark and heavy, but it’s not exactly opera metal or symphonic metal. Megadeth may have started off with classical piano work in their debut album, but it is twinned with rock guitars making it sound much more in place.
Hellish call themselves ‘extreme death metal’, but there isn’t much extreme about their music. It’s not really even death metal, it’s more thrash with ‘Deathcrush’ era Mayhem-like vocals. The music on the whole isn’t bad and it’s certainly full of energy, but it doesn’t push the boundaries enough. The riffs have punky aggression, speed metal tension and gothic darkness, but it’s not uncommon for bands of similar genres to have such influences. Despite the fusing of genres, the songs throughout the album also sound kind of samey. If they built on the piano material, they would likely be onto more of a winner.
The guitar solos are in Kerry King style but the musician plays a little beyond his abilities, here. His scrappiness whilst natural and raw sounding is a bit disappointing. The production is perhaps even rawer, even for early thrash standards, but that is in no way a bad thing. If anything it just makes the music more ‘honest’. The drumming doesn’t lock with the rest of the band in super-tight ways, so the youngsters out there more familiar with everything sounding polished and robotic may find the music sloppy. If so, it will probably just take a bit of getting used to.
In conclusion, this is very typical thrash music. There isn’t too much wrong with it, but it lacks originality and it’s often mediocre. It would probably be better if the lead guitar lines were less complex and better played, but they do add to the whole adrenaline pumping experience, as does pretty much everything on offer. If you are new to genre, this would be a weird first album of its kind (ever heard of ‘Master of Puppets’?), but it would be an entertaining one. Give it a try!
Review by Simon Wiedemann