Tech Death Album Review of Hemotoxin “Between Forever… and the End”

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I’ve yet to discover too many technical death bands which really astound my senses. Death metal is such an encompassing genre with different tonalities, vocals, rhythms, and even songwriting styles. What some call tech death, or progressive death, is just an expansion on death metal to build higher complexity in the music.

Hemotoxin released a small set of demos and one EP before publishing their latest album. “Between Forever… and the End” came out in February of 2013. Unsure of what to expect, I found some videos on YouTube and was very impressed. This lead me to their Bandcamp page with the full streaming album.

It’s a pretty wild ride, for sure.

The vocals definitely stand out to me because of the unique mix of clean-ish speech and screaming put together. There are never truly “clean” vocals, yet it’s not difficult to understand many of the song lyrics.

It’s also noteworthy to listen intently to the guitar tracks. It shouldn’t be any surprise that fierce guitar work is a prominent feature in any technical death band. When thinking of similar bands with complicated riffs Atheist typically comes to mind. And I’d argue Hemotoxin follows a similar path of complicated, almost unsettling riffs throughout every track.

I love when music throws you something you weren’t expecting. Some riff that just comes out of nowhere and makes you think “nice!”. “Between Forever” brought me to this conclusion multiple times. The melodies flow nicely between verses and breakdowns, into solo sections and right back into the rhythm. The sound quality is exceptional and I’m glad to hear this style of metal music being produced in 2013.

The full album has 8 unique tracks along with a cover of “Suicide Machine” originally written by Death. I can’t pick any personal favorites because the album seems to go by quickly. Once you start getting into the first 2-3 songs time goes out the window, and next thing you know it’s over. Each guitar solo had me captivated trying to follow along. The whole experience leaves me craving more Hemotoxin.

In regards to style, one might argue that Hemotoxin seems influenced by many attributes of older Death songs – updated for a modern death metal scene. Their older EP “Divinity in Torture” also features a Death cover song. The recording quality is much better on this album and it amplifies everything about this band’s unique sound.

Loud thrashing drums & blast beats, brutal puzzling guitar riffs, and some truly unique vocals ultimately size up this album’s image. Any metal/rock musicians who enjoy complicated guitar riffs could really get into this album. Hemotoxin is a perplexing yet intense death metal band that I’d highly recommend checking out. You can pick up this album via direct download off Bandcamp for as cheap as $1.

Tyler is a true culture fanatic with love for comic books, music, movies, video games, and all forms of pop culture.

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