Hope for the Dying
Hope for the Dying

Hope for the Dying is the first release on the recently re-launched Strike First Records (a subsidiary of Facedown Records that released records by the likes of War of Ages, Sinai Beach, Inked In Blood, Jesus Wept and Bloodlined Calligraphy), and though its basically a repackaged version of the bands demo from earlier in 2008, it’s still a pretty enjoyable and arpeggio/solo heavy slab of Christian thrash/metalcore.

Clocking in with 7 songs at 36 minutes, Hope for the Dying isn’t particularly tight or dynamic, especially the rhythm/section backbone and some shaky clean vocals, but its does deliver some very, very cool solos and arpeggios that make the release worth it. They are almost a mini, less aggressive version of A Plea For Purging. Guitarists James Houseman and Jack Daniels, while hardly riffing up a storm, do manage to render oodles of shreddage that make the rest of the material almost forgetful, which is a shame as more of an emphasis on the rest of the songs, could have made this release truly killer.

Widdly standout moments litter each song though as the likes of “City of Corpses”, the 1:20 and 2:50 mark of “Our Fallen Comrades”, various moments of noodling during “Would the Angels Say”, and just killer solo to start “In Loving Memory”, and frankly I’m a sucker for such moments, making me enjoy this release far more than I probably should, as I tended to overlook the clean vocals (“Into We Ride into Darkness”), thin production and lack of killer moments between solos (i.e opening riff of “A Beautiful Day for Vengeance”).

There’s lots of promise here if the band can flesh out their material to make the between solo moments slightly more impressive and match the quality of the solos as opposed to being merely filler between killer arpeggios. I’ll be keeping an eye out either way.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by E. Thomas
January 26th, 2009

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