Of Rot and Ruin

Willowtip Records have to be one of the most diverse underground metal labels out there.  With over a half dozen new releases on deck for 2019 Jason Tipton has built quite the label lineup of diverse talent (Ceremony of Silence, Vale of Pnath,).  New Jersey’s Hath are no exception.  Debuting way back in 2015 these guys clearly put a good amount of time in between releases to hone their craft.  Clocking in at a run time of almost fifty minutes this a massively ambitious album with most of the tracks in the six to eight minute range. Citing influences like: Nile, Bloodbath, Opeth and Nevermore Hath play a pretty original form of progressive blackened death metal that I cannot say that I can compare to anyone specific.

Opening up with “Usurpation”, Hath wastes zero time building the opening track with sustained chords and cymbal fills before things kick in.  Once things do kick in holy shit! A.j Viana’s drum work is ferociously charged and I honestly was not expecting this type of intensity from this type of a metal group.  Everything about Hath is done so meticulous that I am pretty blown away by this debut full length.  Frank Albanese’s vocal delivery is outstanding in regards to his brutal vox.  His cadence reminds me quite a bit of Dallas Toler Wade (Ex Nile, Narcotic Wasteland). “Currents” may be one of the strongest tracks on the album.  After listening to this a dozen times another band that comes to mind for comparison would be Philadelphia’s Horrendous who put out a fairly well done album last year in Idol that came out on Season of Mist.  There are some similar progressive elements going on throughout Of Rot and Ruin that reminds me of them.

The classical guitar work done on this album is outstanding and bring to my classical pieces on other classic metal records. “Worlds Within” starts off with an arpeggiated guitar hook that brings me back to Dissection’s Storm of Lights Bane as key wise it reminds quite a bit of “Where Dead Angels Lie”.  The instrumental track “Kindling” reminds me of Galdur’s work on Old Man’s Child Classic album Born of The Flickering. At nearly an hour long this is quite an ambitious debut full length.  Hath put a great deal of time into this album and it shows.  The maturity of this group songwriting wise would have you think they are on their third or fourth album.

I am putting this group and album on my bands to watch list and album of the year list.  This is flat out catchy material that is different than anything else on Willowtip and diverse enough to please many fans of many different subgenres of metal. Give it a whirl. I am really excited for Hath’s future as I think they have hit the ball out of the park with this release.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Nick K
April 19th, 2019


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