Handful of Hate
Hierarchy 1999
[Northern Darkness]

With a 20+ page booklet that's cemented so firmly in the jewel case that I'll NEVER take it out again in fear of ripping it, Handful of Hate return with the newest CD, 'Hierarchy 1999'. I had high hopes for this disc, so high in fact that they would seem unreasonable to some. The previous album had some of the better melodies heard in modern black metal, and with the acquisition of the Necromass (r.i.p!!!) guitarist and Frostmoon Eclipse drummer, how could anything go wrong?

The opener 'The XI Wings of Death' rips with some powerful riffs and FAST drumming - Nicola's vocals sound as demonic as ever too. But it seems to go downhill from there: the songs are short and compact, as if there weren't any ideas floating around the studio.

I miss the clean parts of the previous album, emotional riffs, and distant (but powerful) music. 'Hierarchy 1999' is far too 'in your face' and Marduk to be considered as anything special to me. Fans of recent Marduk and Thy Primordial will worship this without a doubt, and I won't deny that it's a good disc, but it's really not the same band...

2000 brand