Canadian Symphonic Death Metal. Now that is a set of words one simply does not hear very often. However, it is definitely a thing! Hailing from Montreal comes Hollow with their debut release entitled “Mordrake”, a 12-track monstrous audio tapestry that has a little something for everyone with an ear for heavy metal.
Mordrake infuses roaring blast beats, haunting symphonic sounds and thrashing solos as well as distinctively prominent and crushing bass rhythms. The vocalist known only as Mott has an astounding range that goes from higher pitched screeching howls, abysmally low growls and even sports clean “opera-esque” vocals which are featured in the tracks Iscariot, Sunriser, Snow and Death.
The album opens up with Lament Configuration (always gotta love a good Hellraiser reference), which begins with a distortion swell that flows into some dark leads on guitar and is soon accompanied by some steady drums, which soon pick up the pace with some speedy double bass. Here is where the first taste of the synths and piano used throughout the album for a rather epic sounding intro come in. It clocks in around the 1:20 mark and continues into the full track, thus setting the tone for the album off just right.
The next track entitled, Iscariot, starts out with ten straight repetitious auditory punch riffs and a synth accent reminiscent of a Children of Bodom style tone that then kicks into a steady blast beat fill that paves the way into a driving verse. The song is sure to set off the impulse to break out into a full-on air drumming frenzy. The rest of the track is encompassed with groove-fill sections that rotate showing off drums then lets the bass shine through in accompaniment for a measure or two then allows the guitar to lay over and bring it all together. At about the 2:25 mark is when you get your first taste of the clean vox.
Survey says this is group is recommended for listeners of Dimmu Borgir, Emperor, Cradle of Filth, Behemoth and Skeleton Witch, However, the list has just been edited as we’ve just added the likes of Children of Bodom and Scar Symmetry to the repertoire.