A Hill to Die Upon
Infinite Titanic Immortal

First off, congrats to A Hill to Die Upon for the year’s best album cover- a commissioned painting from renowned Serbian artist, Bogdan .

Hailing from the depths of Illinois, A Hill to Die Upon is a fresh new black/death metal act started by the Cook brothers (Adam-guitars/vocals, Michael-Drums), and for a band that’s only been around a year or so (with band members under the age of 20 at the time of recording), Infinite Titanic Immortal is a killer release that bodes well for the future.

Don’t let the Dimmu Borgir-ish three word album title fool you, this isn’t flowery, or synth filled or even remotely trendy, this is a guitar driven, war metal styled release that reminds me if fellow Illinoisans Forest of Impaled, the UKs Spearhead and maybe a stripped down Behemoth with its deft mix of death metal and black metal. Though vocally, things are more on the death metal side with a gruff, but understandable throaty roar/rasp, musically things are a competent mix of melodic death/black metal and death metal, but with plenty of heft and militant/Romanic war marches thrown in.

Admittedly, Infinite Titanic Immortal takes a little while to find its footing with introduction “Of Fire and Division” and “Prometheus Rebound” doing little to grab my attention, but the killer trio of “This King Never Smiles”, “Season of the Starved Wolf” and “Twin Heads of Vengeance” snarl from the speakers with a supine mix of melody and scathing slicing riffs with stern war marches, I am truly impressed by the bands scope and skill. In fact, every track on the album is a keeper after the first two tracks (with the exception of interlude “The Dark Road”). The production is frosty blackness and death metal heft combined perfectly for a crystal clear clarion that gives tracks like “Heka Secundus (On Slithering Ice)”, Behemoth-ish is gait of “We Soulless Men” and epically blistering “Eclipse of Serpents” (an arguable standout if I had to choose one) a presence and confidence many debuts simply lack. Even six minute instrumental closer “Rime” kept my attention, and I really don’t care for instrumentals.

Rather than simply be another The Black Dahlia Murder rip off, A Hill to Die Upon has forged their own path of battle hardened and epic European influences and come away with one of the more impressive American black metal debuts of 2009, if not the last couple of years (with the exception of Krallice). Abigail who?

Oh, did I mention this is a Christian band? My bad, guess I should have mentioned that earlier, eh?

[Visit the band's website]
Written by E. Thomas
September 4th, 2009

Comments

  1. Commented by: vugelnox

    Forest of Impaled and Spearhead comparisons? I’m sold, and yes great artwork!


  2. Commented by: Erik Thomas

    the artwork in the cd actually folds out into a 2 panel piece.


  3. Commented by: Staylow

    This sounds interesting. I’ll have to check it out.


  4. Commented by: Blackwater Park

    I’m not listening to no fucking Christian band.

    :lol:

    JJ. Sounds pretty cool, gotta check them out!


  5. Commented by: krustster

    LOOLOLOL nice review, the way you tacked the last paragraph on there was perfect. I am definitely going to be checking this out solely due to the incredible cover, and other than that because I love “war metal such as Forest of Impaled”. And a Christian band, eh? I’m interested to see how that fits in with their sound.


  6. Commented by: satanshalldie

    you would be making a mistake not to listen to this album.


  7. Commented by: IKONOCLAST

    “I’m not listening to no fucking Christian band”.
    The classic closed minded newbie.

    This album is better than all the 204,503 “core” american bands. Great release. Buy it!


  8. Commented by: smittysmitterson

    He was joking. That’s why he said, “JJ. Sounds pretty cool, gotta check them out!” O_O

    “Due to the nature of the human race, all first posts are to be moderated. Don’t whine about the delay. This is not a democracy.” That deserves an ¡Olé!


  9. Commented by: smittysmitterson

    Ah, and yes, the album is indeed fantastic!


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Due to the nature of the human race, all first posts are to be moderated. Don't whine about the delay. This is not a democracy.

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