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Hatesphere: New Hell

Denmark’s death/thrash kings nudge their laurels

Since forming in 1998, Hatesphere have gone through more members than a virulent outbreak of the clap, but despite guitarist Peter ‘Pepe’ Lyse Hansen being the only founding artist remaining, the band’s status has never wavered.

Since enlisting the help of Danish producer Tue Madsen (The Haunted, Sick Of It All, Cataract), they’ve enjoyed local chart success and earned Danish Awards for To The Nines and The Great Bludgeoning. The current lineup has remained strong for two albums and they are sounding really tight here.

As accessible as it is heavy, this ninth album does a good job of showcasing the band’s familiar mix of crushing and melodic fretwork. However, more drawn-out instrumental sections, the catchy chorus of Head On A Spike and the refreshing On The Shores Of Hell interlude turn things up a notch.

Human Cesspool and The Longest Haul are satisfyingly ominous and Esben ‘Esse’ Hansen’s vocals certainly mean business, but the album needs just a few more standout tracks.