Italy's black metal deviants Handful of Hate are not a new band, in fact they've been around since 1993 and their latest release, the truly lethal Gruesome Splendor is their 4th full length album overall. This corpse painted quartet serve up a potent collection of raw traditional black metal with an emphasis on speed, pummeling guitar riffs and lyrics which pretty much deal in hate and the finer points of torture and sadism. You don't get the standard low-fi production that typically defines most of the bands in this genre as all of the instrumentation comes through loud and clear in the mix. Vocalist Nicola B has a standard raspy vocal delivery which doesn't exactly differentiate him that much from countless other black metal acts but his voice suits the bands music perfectly.
Gruesome Splendor is an above average album and if you're a follower of the classic black metal style then the music on this disc will certainly appeal to you. The problem is there are tons of bands with the same modus operandi as Handful of Hate so if you're looking for music that pushes things a bit further than the norm, then you can probably afford to pass on this one.
2) Theory of Perfection
3) Used to Discipline
4) Tied, Whipped, Educated
5) Grotesque in Pleasure, Rotten in Vice
6) Reproach and Blame
7) Spawn of Decadence
9) Ejaculation Dementiae