Tuesday, 2 December 2014

The Hate Colony - Navigate


Norway has a deep history when it comes to heavy music, which you'll more than likely be familiar with, but it's easy to overlook modern bands in favour of peering back nostalgically towards the originators of the countries scene. Modern bands like Trondheim's The Hate Colony, who released their debit album, Dead Or Victorious in 2011 via Trondercore Records. They've followed it up this year with their second full-length Navigate, again via Trondercore Records.

They've been getting plenty of attention recently, with Metal Hammer Norway attending and writing about their album release show, while they've also recently shared the stage with The Black Dahlia Murder in their home town. I'm certainly eager to here what these guys have to offer.

Tracklisting:-

1. Recheck
2. Trigger
3. The Letter
4. Blood Runs Black
5. Solitude
6. Domain
7. When Worlds Collide
8. Nothing Less
9. Interlude
10. Dialogue
11. Pandemonium
12. Path Of Resistance
13. Welcome To The Hate Colony

I wasn’t expecting that! Melodic guitars, syncopated rhythms and the lowest of low growls open up Navigate on the song Recheck. Add to that electronics that wouldn’t be out of place on one of In Flames’ recent albums and you’ve got a sound that’s thoroughly in the now. Thankfully, even with those modern touches, The Hate Colony retain that European sound. Trigger is full of groovy, heavy riffs and course screams. There may be a little too much electronic wizardry here for some, but it’s certainly very listenable.

They channel their inner death metal on The Letter, which even has some ace melodic leads work going on. I have to admit that I prefer this side to them, as they don’t rely too heavily on electronic effects. The drums are furious and it shows why they were chosen to support TBDM recently! Now this isn’t meant as a cliche but they have a song called Blood Runs Black (remember As Blood Runs Black?), which could give you a hint about some of their musical influences. It’s a solid song too, very focused throughout.

The bass on Solitude is coupled with some virtuoso guitar during the opening bars. They demonstrate plenty of progressive elements during the song, while ensuring that their too-the-point approach isn’t affected by any such off-kilter musings. A lot of people will say they’ve heard this all before, but they’d be missing the fact that The Hate Colony are very accomplished at what they do. They don’t profess to be anything they’re not and prefer to play something that will appeal to a large audience. Domain is the perfect example of that. They’ve chosen a path and they’ve developed their sound well.

It’s either a keyboard or a keytar that beckons in When Worlds Collide, but the song itself contains a strong political theme that darkens the atmosphere. They slickly progress into Nothing Less, which is apt because my overall impression of Navigate is that it’s slick, in both instrumentation and production. I think that slickness works for an album of this nature, so it’s no bad thing at all. They take a break after Nothing Less with a short piano and strings filled Interlude, which is good enough to find it’s way onto TV as an ad or TV trailer backing track! It’s a nice change of mood before The Hate Colony launch into Dialogue

Pandemonium is one of the songs of the record, for all balls-out intro alone. There’s breakdowns, an undercurrent of electro and more Scandi-guitar than you can shake a stick at. Their angular side gets a more thorough workout during penultimate number Path Of Resistance. Welcome To The Hate Colony could be their Children Of Bodom moment! If they grow big enough, they could have a fan club called The Hate Colony! Jokes aside though, I think that if these guys get in enough faces and crucially ears, they could be huge. They’ve got the music to back them up and could reel in a whole new generation of metal loving fans. Quality stuff for fans of modern metal. Good job!

Navigate doesn't appear to be streaming anywhere, but you can download or buy it on CD from all manner of digital outlets. Head over to The Hate Colony's Facebook page for a list - https://www.facebook.com/TheHateColony

Trondercore Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/trondercore

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