Hell Militia – Last Station on the Road to Death

The French black metal super group, Hell Militia has re-emerged 5 years after their debut with 9 new sermons to the sonic disease that dwells within the finer geographical qualities of FBM. Mutiilation in particular… there was always something slightly off and unsettlingly creepy about certain musical moments in that bands career, and vocalist Meyhnach, to a lesser extent of insanity, bleeds his tortured misery and uniqueness over to front Hell Militia as well along with other members who are/were also involved in the bands Arkhon Infaustus, Antaeus, Secrets of the Moon, and Temple of Baal. There is a noticeable polluted undercurrent found in segments of the riff work that instantly put me in mind of Mutiilation as found on the enjoyable tracks “The Ultimate Deception” and “Et Inferno Ego”, but Hell Militia use these traits somewhat sparingly to sour (in a good/necessary way) an otherwise “in time” performance with more typical black metal aesthetics. Dissonant chord structures and fuzzed out notes fill in the cracks of decently written black metal with an underlying “rock” foundation somehow arising from the mix as the 2nd half of this album unfolds. The latter stylistic trait works, but feels a lot more “normal”, if not a bit sillier than I think the band would have hoped for on tracks like “Fili Diaboli” and further perpetuated by the well done cover of GG Allin’s “Shoot Knife Strangle Beat & Crucify”. Amidst the filth and grimy facade of an otherwise well produced release, Hell Militia have created a solid album that really does nothing to revitalize lo-fi underground black metal, nor do they strive to embrace the modern conveniences and trappings of a post 1996 BM sheen, which I can respect, but the songs on their own really don’t offer much flair or overall excitement to snag the listeners ear for long term enjoyment. As it stands, “Last Station on the Road to Death” rode around in my vehicle on the road to my crappy job and kept me interested for a week after it’s arrival. Beyond that brief window in time, the prognosis isn’t favorable, for a lot of the music on this slab has gone to places others have already treaded with a lot more vigor and intensity.

Debemur Morti

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~ by martyworm on November 23, 2010.

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