“Crusade: Zero” is being released after two years have passed since “Solarflesh: A Gospel of Radiant Divinity”. HATE dedicated this album to Slawek “Mortifer” Archangielskij who died during the European Tour of HATE in 2013. The Polish blackened death metallers made another album that follows their successfully used before recipe; their sound is visibly influenced by the other Polish masters BEHEMOTH.
The double intro (“Vox Dei (A Call From Beyond)”, “Lord, Make Me An Instrument Of Thy Wrath”) presents us with instrumental melodies setting the scene for the extreme compositions to commence. Mid-tempo compositions follow the intro with menacing melodies (“Death Liberator”, “Leviathan”) but when the tempo changes to faster speeds, that is when the picture gets more vulgar. The change between slow and fast tracks is strategically used in order not to let the album get too noisy or one-dimensional.
“Crusade: Zero” continues with ‘razor cut’ aggressive riffing dressed with death metal melodies which absorb the listener to the dark and savage hole that HATE created (“Doomsday Celebrities”, “Hate Is The Law”, “Valley Of Darkness”). 51 minutes of melodic blackened death metal – ranging from faster and more extreme tracks to slower but more sinister ones – are completed with the next 5 songs, including another two instrumental tracks (“The Omnipresence”, “Black Aura Debris”) which in my opinion actively contribute to the overall image of the album and provide a change of flow, a balance and maybe an atmospheric break interval the savage compositions.
In general, “Crusade: Zero” is an album worth to check – especially if you are a BEHEMOTH fan – but it seems to lack ‘soulful’ compositions; HATE give away the impression that they walked in their own footsteps to produce an album which is undisputedly reaching the standards that the Polish extreme metallers have set before but does not have any new elements to provide throughout its length. Still, a very enjoyable quality addition to the long HATE legacy that is recommended to every fan of the genre.
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