Fans of My Dying Bride, Anathema,Swallow the Sun, Katatonia, Moonspell, and November's Doom will love the mix of doom and death metal on the new release from Finland's Ablaze in Hatred. Released on Firebox Records, Deceptive Awareness is one gloomy affair, dripping with melancholy and depression , as the band basically stays in one zone for much of the CD's seven lengthy tracks. It's an enjoyable zone however, especially if you like tortured death metal growls bubbling over plodding drums and heavy, doom laden guitar dirges. The occasional clean vocals of guitarist/keyboardist Mika Ikonen come into play on a few tracks, but for the most part he lays down plenty of haunting growls that are sure to chill your soul, especially on tunes like "Ongoing Fall" and "When the Blackened Candles Shine". Through all this doom and despair, there are no shortage of fine melodies to be heard, giving a down and out crusher like "To Breathe And To Soffocate" a memorable quality to go along with its mammoth Sabbath-like riffs and terrifying vocals. There are just enough keyboards splattered about to give some of these tracks a symphonic feel, but the main focal points are the atmosphere and the riffs.
It may be a little too plodding for some, but if you are a fan at all of atmospheric doom/death metal, this will be a must hear for you. An impressive debut from a promising young band from Finland, a country that is really starting to churn out some of the strongest young acts in metal these days.
1. Lost (Overture)
2. When The Blackened Candles Shine
3. Howls Unknown
4. Constant Stillness
5. Ongoing Fall
6. To Breathe And To Soffocate
7. Closure Of Life