Friday, September 9, 2011

Confront Hate - Diabolical Disguise Of Madness

Confront Hate
Diabolical Disguise Of Madness
Hell Xis Records

It’s not all that often I get to hear what’s happening in the metal scene in Portugal, so I was quite keen to hear what long running Faro (Algarve) based outfit Confront Hate had to offer on their debut full-length effort ‘Diabolical Disguise Of Madness’ – the follow up to their self-titled E.P. from 2007.
Playing a mix of thrash and groove metal, it doesn’t take a huge amount of thinking to ascertain exactly what sort of band have played their part in influencing Confront Hate’s chosen style of music. Essentially what you have here is a mix of Pissing Razors, Pantera, Meshuggah and Divine Heresy, without sounding like any one of the bands directly. What this means in a lot of other ways too is that while the five piece act (Comprising of vocalist David Rosa, lead guitarist Ricardo Albino, rhythm guitarist Pedro Faustino, bassist Pedro Viegas and drummer Pedro Costa) are competent at what they do, they certainly don’t have enough originality in their song writing to really make their songs stand out as anything remarkable or memorable.
After a short build up to ease listeners into the album (By way of the instrumental piece ‘Sokenra’), the band fully get the album underway in a heavy fashion with the fast paced ‘Hate Will Never Die’. Brutal, full of crushing grooves and layered in a suffocatingly thick production, ‘Hate Will Never Die’ is a solid track, and one that definitely gets the album off to a trustworthy start. But in terms of really latching into your mind after it’s finished, the song does lack a little in terms of a memorable chorus.
Right from the outset, it’s clear that Confront Hate are all about locking into a tight groove and running with it. And nowhere is it more noticeable than in tracks such as ‘Corrupted Desire’, ‘Conception’ and ‘New Divine Shadow’. Precision delivered riffs and a tight knit rhythm section is what the band really excels at delivering. But in terms of writing hooks (Both within the choruses and on the riff front), Confront Hate still haven’t quite managed to find their niche.
The instrumental ‘Love Grows Cold’ is a cool breather around the latter half
of the album, and serves nicely as a precursor to the title track ‘Diabolical Disguise Of Madness’, which is easily one of the more memorable efforts on the album with its jagged Meshuggah-like time changes, its extra measure of aggression and a chorus that does actually have some distinct sense of melody.
Unfortunately, the album ends on a bit of a confused note, with the band’s attempts to combine some progressive elements (In an almost Devin Townsend fashion) with some heavier sounds on ‘Feeling The Silence’ sounding ill-fitting. And as for the six minutes of silence at the end (Which eventually makes way for a brief guitar effect right at the end), well it comes across as pointless filler.
Confront Hate have all the makings of a great band, but still need to work on writing songs that grab the listener rather than simply pass by without having an impact.
Overall, ‘Diabolical Disguise Of Madness’ is a good solid album, but also one that doesn’t really boast any moments that can be remembered once it’s finished.

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© Justin Donnelly