Tuesday 16 January 2018

Revenge Prevails - False Hope Cruelty

Labels: Self-Released
Formats: CD/Digital
Release Date: 4th Aug 2017


1. Into The Depths
2. Bliss Is A Hoax
3. Underworld
4. Shapeshifter Dawn
5. Apocrypha
6. The Creation Of Destruction Part II (Minions Of The Gloom)
7. Habeas Corpus
8. Wings Of Wax
9. Roots Like Veins Bleeding
10. My Remedy A Blade
11. Levitate And Linger
12. Memoria (Bonus Track)

I'm still catching up on a lot of music from 2017, like the second full-length "False Hope Cruelty" by young Swedish black/death quartet Revenge Prevails. I refrained from calling them a new band because they've been around for nearly ten years now, but as with a lot of DIY bands in the underground, they're still fairly unknown. They self-released a demo CD called "Black Void Injection" in 2013, following it up with their debut full-length "Dark Trembling Solace" in 2015. "False Hope Cruelty" was again self-released in August of last year (limited to 100 CDs, like their previous releases) and they were kind enough to send me one, as they look to reach wider audiences outside of Sweden. 

Revenge Prevails self-recorded and produced this album, only getting assistance with it’s mastering (done by Anders Lagerfors of Nacksving Studio 1). On album opener Into The Depths, they show that they’re pretty adept at writing solid black/death metal that’s influenced by their homeland’s genre forefathers, even down to the lo-fi sound (deliberate or not) and some killer guitar work! They’re also a black/death band from the more progressive end of the sub-genre too, as their songs (and song-lengths) prove. Bliss Is A Hoax borrows elements from modern metal and mixes it in with the more authentic deep-bellows, icy growls and even some sensitive clean vocal harmonies. The rhythm section adds beef, though it’s a little quiet as the volume on the mix isn’t as high as it could be. That’s a minor quibble though and shouldn’t effect your enjoyment of the album though. They play with subtle doom/death elements during Underworld that fit in really well, especially the relative mid-paced tempo that they employ. 

Black metal is further explored on Shapeshifter Dawn, which is the fastest song on the record so far, with kick-drumming and blasts aplenty, as well as more use of both those aforementioned shrieks and occult atmosphere. The guitar work that graces Apocrypha is brilliant, even if it’s buried within the mix somewhat. It definitely adds an avant-garde layer to the album though! A breakdown appears towards the end as well, adding a bit of hardcore bite. The Creation Of Destruction Part II (Minions Of The Gloom) contains a really infectious yet menacing riff at it’s beginning and it leads to a sloth-like death metal song that’s a really engrossing listen. More obvious progression is the order of the day on Habeas Corpus, with it’s metallic guitar melodies. By now, you’re passed the half-way point of “False Hope Cruelty”. One of the longest songs on the record is Wings Of Wax, which funnily enough is also one of the fastest. The more prominent clean vocals during Roots Like Veins Bleeding are a joy to hear amongst the blackness, adding more avant-garde appeal to the record alongside the off-kilter time-signatures and added experimentation that Revenge Prevails pursue. 

There’s a funky/pop-like groove to the opening bars of My Remedy A Blade, which belies the feel of the rest of the song, as it thrashes and blasts through an oddly (for this album anyway) urgent five-and-a-half minutes. Actually, the album becomes more upbeat (in tempo anyway) the closer it gets to the end and penultimate song Levitate And Linger is a fine example of neck-snapping black/death with a difference. The CD only bonus track Memoria is the icing on the cake when it comes to the final trio of songs. “False Hope Cruelty” is a long album at over an hour-and-a-quarter but it’s a great listen. Revenge Prevails have the song-writing and performance skills to propel them to wider audiences, they just need the opportunity, 

You can stream "False Hope Cruelty" (minus the bonus track) and buy it digitally and on CD below:-

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