Since their inception over ten years ago, Danish HateSphere have been guarantors for kick-arse live performances and in-your-face releases. Despite numerous line-up changes which have left us with but one single member from the original line-up, namely guitarist Peter 'Pepe' Lyse Karmark, the HateSphere crew has managed to develop and deliver music which has varied from 'solid' to 'crushing', 'The Sickness Within' and 'Serpent Smiles and Killer Eyes', most would agree, representing the latter category of albums.
And the same can be said of 'Murderlust'! As my teeth have sunk deeper and deeper into the flesh and bones of this collection of riff containers, I've become more and more convinced that this is the best effort of the five-piece so far.
Right from the beginning, you're shot into the propeller-banging-inticing title tune which is followed by the energetic rifforama, Pandora's Hell. Fear Me takes the tempo down considerably and drags you through a dark and scary universe where Esse brings out the growl rather than his thrash/metalcore vocal. The Violent Act takes us into a territory of pure thrash with a melodic touch and tons of wonderful riffs which lend somewhat to...80's hardrock!
Punishable By Death is more plain thrash metal and probably the most straight-forward piece of 'Murderlust'. The intrumental In Process starts off with a clean guitars part and then slightly distorted harmonies. Brings a tear to the eye, almost, that bit! Of course, a massive, dark mid-tempo riff from the two gentlemen Pepe and Nyholm crushes all that. This is a great friggin' piece!
Iconoclast has nothing to do with Heaven Shall Burn, but as thrash metal tunes go, this is as solid as it gets. Darkest Of Forces is another hammer song which ought to loosen neck muscles out there. Refill The Chest cheats a bit because it starts out as another straight-forward thrasher, until it a minute and a half into the song changes tempo, only to...change tempo once again and even quiet down a bit. But, no worries, the pace is picked up again and ends on a simple, but very efficient and crushing thrash riff.
The album proper ends with a cover of Muse's Assassin. I don't know much about Muse, but I find it hard to believe that the original sounds anything like this. HateSphere's just having a crack at it in the way they do best: full on metal.
To finish off, we get an insight into the preproduction version of Murderlust and finally a live version of one of the coolest tunes HateSphere have made, namely 500 Dead People.
Best single moment of the album: When Esse says 'blah!' during the first track. How much spite and cheek can you put into one sound?!
Splendid stuff. Buy by the millions! Go, go, boys and girls!