» Cdreviews  
« back

Hell Within - Shadows Of Vanity

Published May 17 2007

=Staff's pick

Shadows Of Vanity
My Exit In Red
Lay Down Your Arms
The Spiral*
In The Absence Of Fire*
Between The Dead And The Deceived*
For The Taking
A Silent Prayer For The Haunted

Genre Thrash Metal
Matthew McChesney
Tracks 9
Tony Zimmerman
Runningtime 34 Min.
Isaias Martinez
Label Lifeforce Records
Joe Martinez
Release 18 May 2007
Derek Jay
Country USA
Similar artists Trivium, 3 Inches Of Blood, Herod

Hell Within from Massachusetts have their share of thrash metal as well as hard-core in their sound. Luckily, they rest easy on the core stuff. The music is perhaps not that profound, but it is headbanger friendly to say the least. The triple thrash treat that opens the album are good songs in the vein of Trivium, fast and hard-hitting songs with a drive that has an aggressive edge and they all contain catchy melodic refrains. Especially Lay Down Your Arms sounds very much of Trivium with the chorus. Hell Within brings out some furious leads and that they have gathered inspiration from the European melodic death metal can be heard, even if it is thrash that the their music is mostly rooted in. So far so good, but still it is nothing that makes me rise any eyebrows.

The Spiral is the first song that makes me stop and really listen, especially when it brings out a blistering lead and deliver some powerful vocals halfway through the song. Vocally Matthew McChesney pulls this off fair enough with his versatile voice, the growls could have been darker in my opinion and the clean vocals tend to sound strained at times, but even if he is not a perfected vocalist he is surely adequate enough. The growls in Between The Dead And The Deceived are of the kind that I would like to have heard more of on Shadows Of Vanity. Moreover, the song itself is also of the kind that brings out the best of Hell Within as it is fast and aggressive and it could almost qualify as death metal straight through, and it is not that far from One Man Army And The Undead Quartet.

What I do not really like with Hell Within is the painted on aggression. It is as if they intend to sound more aggressive then what they really end up doing. In addition, I do not find that the songs stick for that long with me, it feels like much of it has been done before, and further it has been done better. Things that are good with Hell Within are that it is hard-hitting metal with battering drums that have a raw edge yet a good sense for the melodic. However, it is Isaias Martinez and Tony Zimmerman that represent the biggest and most lasting impact on me, since they never let their guitars rest. In The Absence Of Fire has some of the most intriguing playing on this album, and when the lead harmonizes with the vocals over a galloping rhythm it comes out splendid. They are filling the album with fast playing and some really great leads and melodic and fast melody-lines and they know how to make a heavy riff.








6 chalices of 10 - Thomas

Related links: