New Jersey’s Blackened Death Metal juggernaut, Hath, will release their sophomore full-length album titled All That Was Promised on March 4 via Willowtip Records.
The 4 piece exploded on to the scene with their critically acclaimed debut release in 2019, also via Willowtip Records titled Of Rot and Ruin. Expectations are high for this one and based on the single release so far, Hath will meet those expectations comfortably. The band consists of Frank Albanese on guitar and vocals, Peter Brown on guitar, Greg Nottis on bass and vocals and AJ Viana on drums.
All That Was Promised was produced by Hath themselves with mastering done by Alan Douches of West Side Mastering and artwork from Adam Burke for Nightjar Illustration.
The band released the following statement concerning the new album:
“All That Was Promised was our first time writing as a 4-piece, and we feel like we’ve further developed who we are as a band. We set out to expand on what we did on our previous releases, experimenting with more varied sounds and new ideas, but we wanted this record to be more direct and cohesive. In the end, we ended up with an album that’s darker and more punishing than we expected.
It’s important to us to grow and learn, but without losing sight of what we do best. The content on this album is more personal and introspective, with songs about enduring change and all the promises made to us in life, broken and otherwise.”
All That Was Promised arrives with 9 tracks and approximately 52 minutes and gets underway with the imposing, The Million Violations. It’s a dark and impactful opener leading with a morose melody before an explosion of meaty heaviness takes control. Punchy riffs, crushing drums and visceral vocals tear through you making sure that 100% of your attention stays focused on Hath. Drops back into the morose melody add extra weight to the track which is about as powerful an opener as a band could hope for. If that is a sign of what is to come on All That Was Promised, we are in for a treat. And it is. Across the whole release, we get pure quality on repeat. What also impresses though is the variety in the music.
Yes, this is heavy but there is so much more to it than just crushing riffage and aggression. The music is seriously clever managing to capture an almost atmospheric heaviness with guitars that cross between death and black metal and drums that switch between intense speed and catchy beats. The vocals have enough depth and power, with slight tone variations to keep you always interested including clean (ish) passages and strong backing sections. At it’s heart though, Hath have delivered an album that slays and will fire up mosh pits everywhere they go.
One of my absolute favourites showcases how a band can be intensely heavy yet expansive and that is Kenosis. A visceral beast of a track but one that also finds room for a cleaner chorus and an absolutely banging solo. It is immense.
Lithopaedic brings a touch more slamming groove to proceedings with deep threatening vocals and some progressive guitar elements. It has a wicked ending section with a breakdown that is sure to get heads banging. Iosis is a dark and punishing attack with seriously impressive vocals that seem to reach into your very being. Another firm favourite on an album of excellence is Decollation. The bass led fury that drenches you in the verses is something else and I adore the transition from that intensity into a more atmospheric instrumental section. It’s really clever and toys with your emotions, settling you down before exploding back into absolute chaos.
Death Complex has an intro to die for – the crunchy riffs and drums blend gorgeously with the lead guitars before we enter verses that will absolutely get your adrenaline flowing. The little stop start bits work well and the guitarists chuck another phenomenal solo into the mix too.
Casting Of The Self breaks up things by having a cleaner melodic intro though even that soon reveals it’s true form and turns into a writing blast of heaviness. It drops back into the melody for a while, slow and morose, at almost a doom pace. I love that I don’t really know what is going to happen though I expect it to explode into chaos. And it does returning to the Hath sound with a cacophony of crushing riffs and intense vocals. The return of a cleaner chorus is an important move as, no matter how impressed I am, you need to be able to switch things up for freshness and to keep a listener engaged.
Casting Of The Self is probably the most expansive track on the album so far really mixing in a lot of creative flair with the raw aggression to create one of the best tracks on the album for me. The title track, All That Was Promised, follows that and has a very imposing start. A strum of the guitar plays and stops, plays and stops and in atmospheric metal style, a gentle drum starts to join in, then a clean guitar. It seems as the album progresses, they get more and more expansive.
The doomy slumber gets shaken off soon though as a drum solo starts the transition into a more familiar assault. Speed drumming and riffing blend with the meaty vocals to create a truly impressive and aggressive beast of a track. Little guitar flourishes permeate the darkness but the overall feeling from this song that penetrates you is one of despair and frustration. You have to admire music that makes you feel in such strong ways.
Sadly all great things must come to an end and All That Was Promised ends with Name Them Yet Build No Monument. No surprises for guessing what we get here. Yep, it is a fiery beast of a track full of admirable vocals and punishing music. It’s a long song too so the band play around a little more and there are some interesting guitar quirks that almost sound like a warning alarm. Slow stomping sections are sure to get every head banging along, faster ripping sections will tear up mosh pits and melodic and atmospheric sections will leave you feeling introspective and emotional. This song has everything a metal head could wish for.
All That Was Promised is a phenomenal release from one of the most exciting young bands around. It consistently delivers managing to be full of punishing brutality but with more than enough variety to entice listeners from across the metal spectrum. Hath are a band to get on board with and All That Was Promised delivers in every way imaginable creating one of the most intense releases you will have the pleasure of hearing this year.
All That Was Promised by Hath (Willowtip Records)
By Artist: Hath
The Final Score - 9.5/10