Hail Spirit Noir
Mayhem In Blue


5.0
classic

Review

by piroga84 USER (19 Reviews)
November 4th, 2016 | 93 replies


Release Date: 2016 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A very dark musical and lyrical trip that progresses the band’s vision without losing any of their originality.

On their sophomore album, Oi Magoi, Hail Spirit Noir created a truly original album, blending black metal and psychedelic progressive rock. It was a true work of art, which reminded us that by tastefully mixing genres, great albums are born. Where do you go from there, though?

Mayhem in Blue, while not discarding the avant-gardish dark style of music that made Hail Spirit Noir so extravagantly unique, stands completely in its own right pushing the theatrical element to the extreme. The new album relies heavier in effects while in the same time the structure of the songs became more straightforward: Spoken parts in Greek, a variety of horrifying sounds and bizarre instruments like didgeridoo, humdrum or barrel organ set up a majestic yet dark ambience in almost every song. Again, labeling their music in any way is something Hail Spirit Noir refuses to do.

There is a subtle and addictive paradox in Hail Spirit Noir’s latest work. One would expect that extending the theatrical elements on Mayhem in Blue would take its heavy toll on heaviness, which is clearly not the case. It seems that the band decided to take every aspect of their music a bit further. Yes, there are more mellow acoustic parts and clean operatic singing than in the past, but when the band decides to lay out the riffs, they are heavier than ever before. While the instrumentation is remarkably varied, the songs never lose their focus or drag out aimlessly. Everything is there for a reason.

The opening sequence and sharp riffing of I mean you harm picks up from where the last album concluded, creating a certain groove that screams to be reproduced live, while it’s fast playful rhythm carefully paves the way for the blunt spoken and effective chorus. Clearly the band means us harm. A sudden change in pace in the eponymous track is meant to catch off guard the unsuspecting listener and it works brilliantly. Like a poisonous snake that hypnotizes its victim, Mayhem in Blue is a spaced out, acoustic opus that showcases its great charm using a structured interplay of clean singing and brutal devilish growls.

The undercurrent of impending threat in Riders to Utopia, unveils in the form of a menacing guitar lead and a monotonous yet dynamic drum beat. Although the shortest song of the album, the band is pulling no punches and unleashes its most addictive chorus. By the time Lost in Satan’s charm begins, you find yourself lost inside the album’s peak and longest cut. The carnivalesque, freaky intro gives way to blackened riffing that drives the song in the most absurd way, mixing slow guitar parts with sudden rhythm changes and militaristic beat with energetic drumming. Running around 11 minutes, this carves a niche for larger epics for Hail Spirit Noir and the album’s highlight. The Cannibal tribes come from the Sea paints a gloomy atmosphere showcasing a cleverly used reverb effect that midway transforms into a hellish stream of layered guitar leads. Towards the end of the song, a well crafted short solo erupts into a violent blast beat, seconds before the closing number How to fly in Blackness tightens its mournful grip for one last time on the listener.

This is a very dark musical and lyrical trip, affecting listeners' mind and soul as every great album should. It progresses the band’s vision without losing any of their originality and most probably, Mayhem in Blue will be like nothing you have heard this year. Above all, there is something special in watching a band evolve. Hail Spirit Noir has come a long way the last 5 years, getting a better grip of their art, song by song, album by album. Mayhem in Blue is their audacious step to become one of the best metal bands out there. Just listen.



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user ratings (104)
Chart.
3.9
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
piroga84
November 4th 2016


352 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

the guys returned

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nQ1oop-wvjs

RustCohle
November 4th 2016


174 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

nice review, love the album too.

Digging: Exist - So True, So Bound

Astral Abortis
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2016


2337 Comments


Okay, the album's alright, but a 5? I'm so confused

DungeonBoy
November 4th 2016


2714 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Hey man, good read. I love the surf rock guitar tone and carnival synths in I Mean You Harm, so I'm gonna give the whole thing a spin right now. That 5 has piqued my interest.

piroga84
November 4th 2016


352 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

it started as a 4, pretty soon became 4,5

but midnight it turns to 5 for sure

Astral Abortis
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2016


2337 Comments


I don't like how many clean vocal sections they've implemented here, it's a bit too abundant and kinda cheesy in a bad way, but the heavier passages are great

DungeonBoy
November 4th 2016


2714 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Interesting, I'm actually enjoying the cleans a lot. They blend really well with the prog and don't sound out of place or forced at all which is nice to hear. I've listened to the other albums a couple times but don't remember much from them. This one definitely grabs my attention more on first listen.

piroga84
November 4th 2016


352 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

i see your point there, but it gives a rather epic and depressing vibe to my ear

it runs like slow poison

piroga84
November 4th 2016


352 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

@dungeonboy we are on the same page

definitely the blend heavy/clean parts here is better than previous albums

and thanks



@rustcohle

thanks a lot

DungeonBoy
November 4th 2016


2714 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

DRAG YOUR NAILS THROUGH OUR.. SKULLS? skulls? sku..



favorite part on the album.

Evreaia
November 4th 2016


4864 Comments


I really liked Pneuma, but wasn't a fan of Oi Magoi (seemed incredibly forgettable compared to Pneuma), guess I'll check this out then.

Astral Abortis
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2016


2337 Comments


Oi Magoi is my fave, has some really amazing hooks

piroga84
November 4th 2016


352 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

thread your fingers aaaaaaaand

DANCE

Evreaia
November 4th 2016


4864 Comments


Oi Magoi grew of me real quick, dunno maybe because I wasn't sued to the sound Pneuma stook better with me.

emester
November 4th 2016


8107 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

This does nothing for me

manosg
Staff Reviewer
November 4th 2016


10370 Comments


I am ashamed to admit that I have never checked this band but your review has made me very curious, pos.

Digging: London Grammar - Truth is a Beautiful Thing

DungeonBoy
November 4th 2016


2714 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

"Grind your teeth, make the flavor last!" The Cannibal Tribe Came From the Sea is so good.

piroga84
November 4th 2016


352 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

oi magoi is really really good

start from there manos

this is darker

Mewcopa0
November 4th 2016


1878 Comments


"extending the theatrical elements in Mayhem in Blue"

This isn't really a huge deal, and the way you have it might be fine for all I know. Saying "in the album" sounds kind of weird. I've only ever heard it as "on the album" or in this case, "...elements on Mayhem in Blue."

bentheREDfan
November 4th 2016


345 Comments


I've tried. Really hard. But I just cannot get into stuff like this. Good review though, have a pos.



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