Hate Eternal
Upon Desolate Sands

After locking into their sound on 2005’s I. Monarch, Erik Rutan and Hate Eternal have delivered 4 damn fine albums of American death metal that’s one of the more solid discographies of the last decade or so. And with the addition of drummer Hannes Grossman (Alkaloid, ex Necrophagist) on drums to Rutan and JJ Hrubovcak (on his third Hate Eternal album now), it’s business as usual.

The band’s development from a clinical/surgical tech death whirlwind on their first two album into a more menacing, punishing , crumbling act has been one of the better evolution’s in American death metal and Upon Desolate Sands continues the band’s deadly tones with a perfect balance of sheer vortexes of blasting, monster lurches and even some Vital Remains/Dave Suzuki ish melodic leads for good measure.

From aptly title opener “The Violent Fury” to the surprisingly somber closing instrumental “For Those we Have Lost”, the album delivers the goods both in the speed department  as heard on  the aforementioned opener as well as “What Lies Beyond”, “Vengeance Striketh”, “All Hope Destroyed” and “Dark Age of Ruin” (with a very cool closing militant march) which deliver blistering cyclones of savagery and slower more churning numbers. And it’s these tracks where Rutan and his monstrous production really shine as the likes of  “The Nothingness of Being”, “Portal of Myriad” (which delivers a little of both) and the simply devastating penultimate title track cut a swathe of lurching, perfect death metal. The title track in particular being one of the band’s heaviest and lumbering, grooviest tracks, with a hint of Nile-ish, Middle Eastern swirl and a whole lot of crushing heft.

Death metal does not have to be groundbreaking or progressive to be brilliant. Sometimes it just has to be simply perfect death metal and you know it when you hear it; Abysmal Torment‘s The Misanthrope, Corpsessed’s Impetus of Death, Sulphur Aeon‘s The Scythe of Cosmic Chaos, and this album  are all examples of utterly perfect death metal in 2018.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
November 12th, 2018


  1. Commented by: Nicholas Kulczycki

    Nice review Erik. This is first Hate Eternal album that they used seven strings ( Nothingness of Being and Upon Desolate Sands) being some of the heaviest tracks on the record. Can’t say enough positive things about Grossman’s drum performance. What an outstanding mix and pleasure to listen to. One of the best albums of the year and a top 3 all time Hate Eternal record IMO.

  2. Commented by: Kevin E.

    Another phenomenal album from one of the most consistently awesome bands on the entire planet. The double bass work is amazing.

  3. Commented by: Clauricaune

    I can always count on Erik naming a bunch of bands in his reviews that are really worth checking out.

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