Sometimes you play a release and its love at first listen and that is exactly how it was for me with the debut four track EP ‘Undead’ from the Kirkcaldy masked Metalcore/Groove Metal quintet H8teball, it’s a release that resonates with me on so many levels.
Lyrically it’s very profound, particularly the opener “Almighty” a track which, right from the strong building opener, makes a bold statement, panning out to something that is punchy with an abundance of intense riffs causing you to involuntarily grimace fiercely, gaze to the sky and reach for those invisible oranges, an assured mark of Metal excellence across the whole album, and I love the vocals, a raw acerbic growl that delivers lyrically with good clarity of content.
Next the hugely moving “Unbreakable” with its utterly crushing opener, builds to a driving pace, switching between these two extremes whilst delivering powerful affirming lyrics of strength through adversity.
It’s a close call but my favourite of the four tracks has to be “Black Mamba”. It ticks all the boxes and a few I didn’t know even needed ticking, the superbly ominous hardcore opening build, developing punch but with a hugely addictive groove that bounces along with the vocals, which have excellent intonation and protraction, the whole thing courses along so addictively dragging you along for the ride, it also shifts seamlessly and from midway the rapid fire drum delivery complements the riffs that kick in to mirror it.
Finally, the opening chugging riffs grab you immediately on “Undead” there’s a crushing but sexy groove that chugs along, with the second half heralded by a rousing burst of lead work and complementary drum battery before tailing back into that vocally punctuated crushing groove.
H8teball “formed to make as much mayhem as possible, whilst sounding heavy doing so” and as far as I am concerned, they have achieved that and more with these four brutally stunning offerings, I’ve listened to this repeatedly about twenty five times so far and it still makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up and gives me that pit of the stomach feel you get when you find a rare gem of a release that burrows into your very core with its positive affectivity, I love it more with each listen, of which there will be many more. Available to listen and buy as a digital release via the link below.
Rating – 5/5