Album Review: Mhorgl – Heresiarch
Band: Mhorgl (Australia)
Album: Heresiarch (2011)
Genre: Raw/Blackened Thrash Metal
I had a hard time making my mind up about this album. This album just pulled me two ways, and I couldn’t choose whether I liked it or didn’t. In the end, I found that this album is just what it says, it’s an album for the heretic.
It’s funny that for days, no weeks I couldn’t make sense of this record at all. Started it more than a few times, but I often just quit half-way through, often out of pure boredom. However, now it has gotten a little more depth for me, I can finally start on pulling this apart properly. When I skim through the song titles, the first thing they make me think of is Warhammer 40,000. The whole god-thing, the power, the Latin phrases etc. really make my mind go towards my two best friends who play this shit, but I don’t because it’s too damn expensive. Anyways, I still don’t know what it is with this album so let’s just dive in.
The music on Heresiarch is pretty straight forward. It’s fast, very fast, not very heavy, but that is probably due to the production, because this band shows us an archetypal use of blast beats and pounding double bass. One the other side, there are some acoustic guitar-interludes, which are great and heavily influenced by Classical music. The guitars are quite melodic actually, there’s a lot of tremolo picking going on and the riffs are very technical. The vocals are of the high sort, and as often is the case with those, they show little depth and variety. On the other hand, I really like the almost walking attitude of the bass, which seems to flow through its Classical music-influenced parts with ease, hiding behind the manic drumming and guitars.
The record is very flat, there’s very little depth in the mix. The bass is audible, but not very loud and the vocals are just plain. If one is doing something else besides listening, the music can fly by very fast and not capture the mind of the listener. This could be pleasant at times, but with this album, the music just fades to a mere noise, which is probably one of the reasons I shut it down half-way so often.
I don’t know what it is with this album. Sometimes I think, “ah, this is awesome shit.”, but I mostly find myself looking at how long it will take before the album finishes, although it’s often worthwhile to finish it (the better tunes are in the latter part of the record). It’s weird because with such a short length, just over 40 minutes, and such an appealing style, this should be giving me a blast, and blow my eyes out. Instead, this just bores me to piss. Let me be honest. There is some good songwriting here, the acoustic parts are excellent and there are definitely some memorable tunes. However, in the end Heresiarch just sings me to sleep and I can’t help but skip to something with more depth.
In conclusion, Heresiarch is an album which is fast, good in songwriting and musicianship. However, the shallow mix just kills it and makes the listening experience a terror. So, if you can’t be bothered by the lack of depth, and you’re in for some intense Blackened Thrash Metal, you should get yourself some Mhorgl.
My Grade: 8.0/10
Buy this when:
- you like yourself some Blackened Thrash
- you’re a heretic to the bone
- you don’t mind the shallow production