Darkest Hour – The Eternal Return


Artist

Album

The Eternal Return

Label

Victory/StompRecords

Year

2009

For Fans Of

At the Gates – Dimension Zero – Himsa

Summary

Album of the year?

Rating

96 / 100

Review

Apparently a few people were lost as to where DH was heading on their previous release “Deliver Us”.  Considering most individuals would be frothing at the gash if they were capable of crafting an album of such magnitude it must all be in jest.  Those who still mock this band after their sixth and possible opus release are clearing deaf, or just lost as fuck. 

Being slightly worried that previous lead guitarist and all around shred guru had left the band did warrant some concern.  One spin through the “Eternal Return” and I became slightly embarrassed if not ashamed with myself for doubting a band who I have held in high esteem for many a moon.  The Eternal Return will easily contend as one of the best metal releases of 2009 with only one real threat coming to mind in the form of Between the Buried and Me. 

Returning to producer Brian McTernan (responsible for their previous discs The Mark of the Judas as well as So Sedated, So Secure) has obviously been a wise decision  as the overall feel of the album is much dirtier as well being an all out thrash outing.  The vocals are as rough as ever, and the “cleaner” style John Henry was beginning to adopt in songs such as Daemons has been dropped from the fold.   

The album as a whole contains ten tracks and the total run time barely reaches the 34:53. Not that this is surprising considering Darkest Hour punch through thrash riffs at a pace that can be likened to light speed (see “The Tides” and “Bitter” for excellent examples of this intensity).  I have always admired how the band is capable of bringing their songs to the brink of climax before reverting back to the chorus so it’s great to see this trend being carried on in the form of “Blessed Infection”. “Into the Grey” provides a suitably epic close and has a number of layers to sift through.

Darkest Hour are one of dying breed who are capable of transcending different heavy styles of music without making it sound like a munted animal.  Blending equal parts At the Gates with hardcore influences they have, with each release, pushed the boundaries of modern American Metal.  Considering this is their last album to fulfill their contractual obligations with Victory Records one can but hope that a label who can really cater the bands needs picks them up

Conclusion

Superb release from a band that never fails to astound, do me a kindness and buy the album so Cam brings the band back out to our country ASAP.

Tracklisting

  1. Devolution of the Flesh
  2. Death Worship
  3. The Tides
  4. No God
  5. Bitter
  6. Blessed Infection
  7. Transcendence
  8. A Distorted Utopia
  9. Black Sun
  10. Into the Grey

6 Responses to “Darkest Hour – The Eternal Return”

  1. Inferno

    Good album. Good score.

    I’m glad the dude has mostly given up that half-assed singing stuff he did on the last album.

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