Suffering Hour – In Passing Ascension (Review)

Suffering HourThis is the debut album of US blackened death metal band Suffering Hour.

Suffering Hour’s 2014 debut EP Foreseeing Exemptions to a Dismal Beyond was a release that really struck a chord with me. The band’s primitive-yet-powerful display of old-school death metal took elements of thrash and black metal and used them to enhance their core business. And as they say; business was good.

Three years later and we finally see their debut full length. It has been worth the wait.

Showing an increase in maturity and confidence, In Passing Ascension is also a darker and more considered release, without losing that primal power that they channelled so well on their first EP.

The songs on here manage to be both old-school and timeless. The progression in the band’s songwriting skills is clear; they’ve moved on from where they were a few years go, without sacrificing what made them such an exciting proposition.

With death metal savagery that’s aided and abetted by black metal darkness, these songs manifest themselves as grim pieces of death metal art. The band create nightmare atmospheres with ease, and some of the riffs that they have crafted really make you sit up and take notice. These songs are ridiculously strong.

The vocals, well-performed in the past, are now even better. There’s real presence here, as well as the seemingly ever-present and lingering sense of darkness that seems to spill over into them from the music – In Passing Ascension is draped in the stuff. Blackened death metal this is, right down to its very core. I wouldn’t be surprised if the band have made an infernal deal or two to sound like this.

Well, I must admit that I didn’t expect this. Yes, I was expecting a good album from Suffering Hour, but the levels of quality and filthy evil that they’ve given us is on quite another level entirely.

This really is an impressive dark revelation of the highest order. Bow down before your new masters!

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